Pakistan entered the final of the Cricket World Cup for the first time in 1992 edition. They were a strong contender in 1987, but lost the semifinal. Nobody gave them a chance in 1992 World Cup and they won the final. South Africa has faced such losses in first two semifinals, and also in the 2011 World Cup Quarterfinals where they appeared the strongest. Now, due to choker tag nobody gives them a chance. Still, there are five reasons which suggest South Africa can do a Pakistan and enter their first final now.
Five Reasons (Similar to Pakistan’s 1992 campaign)
1. 4th attempt to reach final.
2. Opponent is same, New Zealand.
3. Hosts are same: Australia and New Zealand.
4. Venue is same, Eden Park Auckland.
5. Like Pakistan, South Africa are also not expected to win.
Pakistan failed to enter the final in their first three semifinal attempts. In 1992, their fourth attempt got them entry to their first final. South Africa is also attempting fourth time after first three failed attempts in 1992, 1999 and 2007 World Cup. Interestingly, Pakistan also faced New Zealand in the semifinals of 1992 World Cup when they broke their semifinal jinx, and the venue was also the same region.
South Africa is not playing its 4th consecutive semifinal, unlike Pakistan who played 4th consecutive semifinal in 1992 World Cup, after their losses during semifinals of 1979, 1983 and 1987 World Cups. Since joining the World Cricket in 1992, South Africa has entered the semifinals in every alternate edition: 1992, 1999 and 2007 World Cups, and now 2011 World Cup.
In a high scoring match at the same venue Eden Park, Auckland, the host Kiwis scored 262/7 which was chased by Pakistan at the loss of 6 wickets.
Although all the four teams are equally talented, but one team should have some edge and South Africa appears to have that edge over New Zealand. Not because of its team, but because of their fresh attitude of defying history.