Pakistan fail to take big lead as Proteas move closer to victory

South Africa were on course for victory despite aggressive resistance from Pakistan’s tail-end batsmen and the late loss of their captain Graeme Smith on the fourth day of the first Test at Centurion Park here on Sunday.

Needing 199 to win, South Africa were 69 for two at the close.

Part-time off-spinner Mohammad Hafeez struck a blow for Pakistan in the last over of the day when he trapped Smith leg before wicket for 32.

It left the host nation with another 130 to get on the final day with eight wickets standing to take the lead in the three-match series.

Left-arm spinner Paul Harris took four for 46 as Pakistan were bowled out for 302 in their second innings, with the last three wickets adding 103 runs.

Harris and seamer Shaun Pollock bowled with tight control as Pakistan were reduced to 199 for seven - a slender lead of 95.

Smith opted for the new ball to blast out the tail but the decision heralded a period of batting mayhem in which fast bowlers Andre Nel and Makhaya Ntini were thrashed to all parts of the ground.

Ignoring the niceties of technique and resorting to old-fashioned slogging, Shahid Nazir slammed a career-best 40 off 35 balls as he and Rana Naved ul-Hasan put on 56 for the eighth wicket before Nazir swung once too often and was bowled by Ntini.

Naved and Danish Kaneria carried on meting out punishment to the bowlers, scoring 33 and 23 respectively before Smith called back Harris, who finished the innings with his second delivery.

Harris at one stage conceded only six runs in nine overs as Pakistan found it difficult to score during the afternoon.

Playing in his second Test, Harris made a breakthrough shortly before lunch when he had Imran Farhat caught at silly mid-off for 68.

He followed up with the wickets of Faisal Iqbal, who drove a catch to cover, and Kamran Akmal, who tried to break the shackles imposed by Harris. Akmal hit two successive fours off the spin bowler but then top-edged a sweep to short fine leg.

Pollock claimed the crucial wicket of Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq with the help of a diving catch by AB de Villiers at midwicket. Inzamam made 35.

South Africa dropped four catches, with wicket-keeper Mark Boucher the culprit twice.

The left-handed Farhat, who survived a difficult chance to gully when he had seven on Saturday, took most of the morning to advance from his overnight 41 but he was lucky to survive. Without adding to his score, he edged Makhaya Ntini to Jacques Kallis at second slip, with the ball reaching the fielder on the half-volley.

On 47, Farhat was dropped by wicket-keeper Mark Boucher off Ntini when Boucher dived in front of first slip Graeme Smith. Boucher later could not hold a leaping chance from Faisal Iqbal off Kallis but it was not expensive as Iqbal added only three more runs before driving Harris to cover.

Farhat batted for 261 minutes, faced 167 balls and hit 10 fours.

De Villiers was soon out as South Africa started their chase but Smith and Hashim Amla put on 47 for the second wicket before Hafeez claimed Smith’s wicket. —AFPScoreboard

Pakistan won toss

Pakistan 1st inns 313 (Yasir Hameed 65, Younis Khan 68, Inzamam-ul-Haq 42; M Ntini 5-83)

South Africa 1st inns 417 (H M Amla 71, A G Prince 138, H H Gibbs 94; Mohammad Asif 5-89)

Pakistan 2nd inns (overnight 103-2)

Mohammad Hafeez c Smith b Kallis 15

Imran Farhat c de Villiers b Harris 68

Yasir Hameed c Boucher b Kallis 9

Younis Khan lbw b Pollock 38

*Inzamam-ul-Haq c de Villiers b Pollock 35

Faisal Iqbal c Gibbs b Harris 9

†Kamran Akmal c Gibbs b Harris 15

Naved-ul-Hasan c Prince b Pollock 33

Shahid Nazir b Ntini 40

Danish Kaneria c Gibbs b Harris 23

Mohammad Asif not out 8

Extras (lb5, nb4) 9

Total (all out, 96.2 overs) 302

Fall: 1-41, 2-58, 3-115, 4-154, 5-175, 6-187, 7-199, 8-255, 9-283

Bowling: Nel 22-6-69-0; Ntini 16-2-78-1; Pollock 22-7-60-3 (1nb); Kallis 16-0-44-2 (3nb); Harris 20.2-6-46-4

South Africa 2nd inns

*G C Smith lbw b Hafeez 32

A B de Villiers c Younis b Asif 12

H M Amla not out 17

P L Harris not out 1

Extras (lb1, nb6) 7

Total (2 wkts, 18 overs) 69

To bat: J H Kallis, H H Gibbs, A G Prince, †M V Boucher, S M Pollock, A Nel, M Ntini

Fall: 1-20, 2-67

Bowling: Mohammad Asif 7-0-32-1 (5nb); Naved-ul-Hasan 2-0-9-0 (1nb); Shahid Nazir 2-1-5-0; Danish Kaneria 5-1-14-0; Mohammad Hafeez 2-0-8-1

Umpires: S A Bucknor (West Indies) and B R Doctrove (West Indies). TV umpire: K H Hurter. Match referee: B C Broad (England)

Forthcoming matches: January 19-23 2nd Test, Port Elizabeth. January 26-30 3rd Test, Cape Town

Source:The News

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Written by Team CricketViewer on January 15th, 2007 with 33 Views

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