South Africa avoided becoming the first World Cup host to lose its opener. Bafana Bafana can now focus on trying to get to the next round for the first time, and a victory on Youth Day would put it on the brink of reaching that goal.
South Africa looks to commemorate the holiday when it faces Uruguay in a key Group A match in Pretoria on Wednesday.
Expected to struggle as host, South Africa was solid in a 1-all draw with reigning CONCACAF champion Mexico in the World Cup opener Friday.
"I believe the ice has been broken ... and I believe in the next match we will be even more confident," said coach Carlos Alberto Parreira, who guided Brazil to the 1994 World Cup title.
While South Africa improved the tournament record for the host in the opener to 10-0-3, it's likely more concerned with avoiding the dubious distinction of becoming the first home nation to fail to advance from the opening round.
All four teams in Group A have one point after Uruguay played France to a scoreless tie Friday. France and Mexico meet Thursday.
A victory on Youth Day would get South Africa even closer to the knockout stage while also celebrating the holiday of the Soweto uprising in 1976 when students challenged the Apartheid regime.
"It is a big day in South African history, and we as players want to beat Uruguay and take a step closer to reaching the knockout phase and thereby making it a double celebration for South Africa," midfielder Steven Pienaar said.
Pienaar could be key against Uruguay after struggling and being substituted in the second half Friday. He claimed his legs are tired after a long season with Everton.
"It was a tough season in England for me," Pienaar said, "and I will shake it off hopefully against Uruguay."
Uruguay has its sights set on advancing beyond the group stage for the first time since 1990, and adding more power to its attack is the priority after mustering three shots on goal Friday.
La Celeste is expected to start three forwards with Diego Forlan and Luis Suarez joined by Edinson Cavani, who has two goals in 13 games for the national team and 27 over the last two seasons with Palermo in Italy's Serie A.
While Cavani is considered one of the bright young forwards in the world, production from Forlan and Suarez could be crucial.
Forlan has scored 56 goals for Spain's Atletico Madrid over the last two seasons, while Suarez was the Dutch Eredivisie's leading scorer with 35 goals for Ajax in 2009-10.
Forlan, who is expected to play behind Suarez and Cavani, showed glimpses of his offensive potential against France, but he's trying to take pressure off himself by claiming he "only tries to do the best possible for the team" and "I don't promise goals."
Uruguay and South Africa played to a scoreless tie in the most recent meeting in December 2007 in Johannesburg.