Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
“We definitely look to get it 4-1 and that is our main goal and if we do that, it would be awesome”
Just a day after becoming the youngest South African to score an ODI century, Proteas wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock has announced that there is no reason why the national team cannot win the fifth and final ODI against Pakistan in Sharjah to end the five-match series 4-1.
The 20-year-old’s maiden ODI century, along with pace bowler Dale Steyn’s career-best bowling figures of 5/25, helped South Africa register a 28-run win over Pakistan in the fourth ODI in Abu Dhabi.
“We definitely look to get it 4-1 and that is our main goal and if we do that, it would be awesome,” De Kock said.
Speaking about his maiden ODI century, de Kock said: “It was great. It was a tight knock and I enjoyed it a lot and it was more good for the team that with the match we won the series so it was good.”
The opening batsman added that he was pleased his hard work after South Africa’s 4-1 defeat to Sri Lanka in August had paid off.
“I got back and worked hard and did a lot of analysis and technical work and that is paying off,” he said. “It was difficult to face Pakistani spinners, it’s always a big challenge but I am happy that the hard work is paying off.”
However, de Kock was quick to dismiss rumours that he had permanently replaced Test captain Graeme Smith in the ODI squad.
“I wouldn’t say that I have replaced Graeme, they are big shoes to fall in so I have to make sure that I meet those standards,” de Kock said. “It’s great to be in the team. All accept me what I am and it’s a great team environment.”
Meanwhile, Pakistan batsman Shoaib Maqsood, who scored a brilliant 56 on debut, stated that his team would be looking to win the final ODI in order to regain some pride.
“It is true that the series is gone but on Monday we will have another international match and we will do our best to win it,” he said. “There is huge disappointment in the camp over the series loss but we have another match to play, then two Twenty20 and then a short tour of South Africa so the focus is to do better.”