Tahir’s triple blow leaves Pakistan at 60-6
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — South Africa legspinner Imran Tahir’s triple strike left Pakistan reeling at 60-6 on the first day of the second cricket test on Wednesday.
Tahir (3-17), playing his first test against his country of birth, struck twice in the last over before lunch when he had captain Misbah-ul-Haq leg before wicket for 2 and then bowled Adnan Akmal for a duck.
Dale Steyn (2-14) also showed no signs of injury on his right hamstring when he had opening batsman Khurram Manzoor dismissed off the second ball of the match off an outswinger and also had Younis Khan caught behind on 10 in his two sharp spells in the first session.
South Africa seamers seemed to have learnt from Abu Dhabi’s seven-wicket drubbing as they pitched up the ball and pinned down Pakistan to just 27 runs in the first hour after Misbah won the toss and opted to bat first.
Shan Masood (21) and Azhar Ali (19) shared a 38-run stand but both looked edgy against the seamers before South Africa struck in quick succession in the last half an hour with Tahir claiming three wickets off 11 balls.
Morne Morkel had Ali trapped leg before wicket off another sharp pitched-up delivery and Younis got a faint edge in Steyn’s return spell to be caught behind.
South Africa brought in Dean Elgar after Hashim Amla flew back home to be with his pregnant wife after the first-test defeat last week. Steyn had to pass a fitness test on his right hamstring after he injured it during practice last Sunday.
Pakistan retained the same playing 11 which won the first test last week.
The Proteas are aiming to preserve their seven-year unbeaten record of not losing a test series away from home since Sri Lanka beat them 2-0 in 2006.