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Page last updated at 22:50 GMT, Friday, 11 June 2010 23:50 UK

World Cup match-day 1: Garth Crooks' team of the day

Garth Crooks
By Garth Crooks
BBC football reporter in Johannesburg

Well, the biggest football tournament on earth is finally upon us and some of the best, most controversial and exciting players in the game will be gracing the World Cup stage in South Africa.

Regular users of the BBC Sport website will know that during the English Premier League season I choose a team of the week but for this tournament I will be picking a team of the day during the 2010 Fifa World Cup.

Here's my top picks from the opening day:

Itumeleng Khune
ITUMELENG KHUNE (goalkeeper)
South Africa

The South African goalkeeper kept his country in the game in the first half when Mexico could easily have been 2-0 ahead.

Paul Aguilar
PAUL AGUILAR (right-back)

He was a constant threat against South Africa in the first half and looks like a really good player.

Diego Lugano
DIEGO LUGANO (centre-back)

At the heart of the Uruguay defence, it was a great performance and clean sheet.

Eric Abidal
ERIC ABIDAL (centre-back)

Steady display from the French central defender who kept Uruguay's dangerous attack at bay and offered good support to team-mate William Gallas.

Patrice Evra
PATRICE EVRA (left-back)

The Manchester United defender played to his normal high standards.

Rafael Marquez

Played really well in front of two central defenders. Steady as a rock and also scored Mexico's vital equaliser.

Siphiwe Tshabalala
South Africa

Clearly, this was goal-of-the-day and a historic performance which sparked a frenzy of noise inside Soccer City.

Giovani dos Santos
GIOVANI DOS SANTOS (right-midfield)

A constant threat from the Mexican.

Steven Pienaar
South Africa

The Everton man played really well and goes into the top of my diamond midfield. His experience was vital.

Diego Forlan
DIEGO FORLAN (forward)

The former Manchester United striker never gave up the battle up front.

Luis Suarez
LUIS SUAREZ (forward)

He may have drawn a blank, like Forlan, but I think there are goals in this player. One to watch.

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see also
Garth Crooks picks team of season
11 May 10 |  Premier League

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