England v Pakistan, Southampton Pakistan won its last ODI series in November 2008 against the West Indies. They have a golden opportunity to win a series now and a win here will not only end their controversy-stricken tour on a high note, but also silence the critics for a while. Form is with Pakistan as they have won two good games and lost a close third one at Leeds. Pakistan gave a solid all-round display at the Oval and Lords and if they keep up the tempo, they should also come good today. Bowlers have been Pakistans main strength but the batsmen also need to chip in especially the middle order. Batsmen have got starts but havent capitalised on them. Another good start from the openers at the top will be vital. Shoaib Akhtar is under a slight injury scare and if he misses out, it will be a big blow for the visitors. Umar Gul is in superb form and will have to lead the attack with another super effort. Toss will be very crucial as batting first will be a big plus. Ball can wobble around under lights which can be a big disadvantage for team batting second. England won the first two games but have lost it a bit in the last two. No one apart from Andrew Strauss has been able to deal with Pakistani bowlers convincingly. And going by crickets performance curve, Strauss is in for a failure today. England need the rest of the batsmen to deliver today if they are to secure the series. In bowling, Graeme Swann has been the main man and will once again be used to tie down the Pakistanis. All said and done this is being billed as another close game. Both teams need to put away the off-field controversies aside and focus on cricket. England have the potential but Pakistan have the form and with determination they can pip England and end tour on a high. Players to watch: Mohammad Yousuf has taken starts but hasnt been able to convert them into something big. Today is the day for him as Pakistan look to win the series and they will need a big score from their main batsman. Yousuf is a champion willow wielder and will be required to play a solid innings. Graeme Swann has been Pakistans nemesis on this tour and dented their batting line at Lords with four wickets. Swann can turn the ball big and has tremendous control over his variations. If Pakistan are to come good today, they need to keep Swann quiet. Head to head and Conditions Pakistan won their last ODI at Southampton chasing down a stiff target in 2006. With a flat pitch in the offing, Pakistan will fancy their chances. Being a day and night game batting first will be a good idea. Nabeel Sabir