[QODLink]
Cricket

Hafeez is Pakistan's hero on day one

Pakistan take six wickets in the final session to shock South Africa on opening day of the first Test.
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2013 18:12
Hafeez (L) took shine off Smith's 32nd birthday and 100th Test celebrations with some devastating bowling [GETTY]

Seemingly oblivious to South Africa's celebrations of Graeme Smith's 100th Test as captain, Pakistan stole the show by bowling out the Proteas for 253 on day one Friday of the first Test.

On Smith's 32nd birthday, the Wanderers crowd were expecting a dominant showing from their long-serving leader, only for Pakistan offspinner Mohammad Hafeez to be the unexpected star.

Hafeez took two key middle-order wickets before making short work of the tail to finish with figures of 4-16. He then opened the batting and scored all of Pakistan's runs as the tourists closed on 6 without loss.

The hype in the buildup to the Test had centered around Smith, who led South Africa for the 99th time, having also captained a World XI in a Test against Australia in 2005.

Yet after Smith won the toss and elected to bat on a sunny day, Pakistan's bowlers overcame an indifferent start to grab the initiative and claim six wickets in the final session.

Pakistani persistance

All of South Africa's top six batsmen made starts, yet Jacques Kallis' 50 was the highest score on the day due to a combination of reckless shots and Pakistani persistence.

Although Pakistan's fast bowlers were slow to find their lengths in a wicketless opening hour, they adapted to the conditions and dismissed both Smith and his opening partner, Alviro Petersen, in the space of five deliveries.

Kallis and Hashim Amla rebuilt the innings, then counterattacked after the lunch break, but Pakistan's bowlers maintained their discipline and found excellent support from their fielders to break a crucial stand.

First, Kallis was superbly caught by a diving Asad Shafiq at deep midwicket after taking on a clever bouncer from Umar Gul, and then Amla, on 37, lashed a Younis Khan delivery to gully where he was well held by Azhar Ali.

South Africa fought back with a 64-run stand between AB de Villiers and Faf du Plessis, only for Hafeez to enter the attack in the 71st over and have De Villiers caught behind with his very first delivery.

Du Plessis played on off Junaid Khan shortly after to depart for 41, before South Africa's lower order folded quickly in the face of the second new ball, adding just 23 runs for the final four wickets.

That left Pakistan with a tricky two overs to face at the end of the evening session, but Hafeez and Nasir Jamshed comfortably survived to make it Pakistan's day.

391

Source:
AP
Topics in this article
People
Country
Featured on Al Jazeera
Your chance to be an investigative journalist in Al Jazeera’s new interactive game.
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Featured
Polio remains endemic in Pakistan as health workers battle anti-vaccine prejudice and threat to life by armed groups.
Despite 14-year struggle for a new mosque in the second-largest city, new roadblocks are erected at every turn.
Authorities and demonstrators have shown no inclination to yield despite growing economic damage and protest pressure.
Lebanese-born Rula Ghani may take cues from the modernising Queen Soraya, but she'll have to proceed with caution.
One of the world's last hunter-gatherer tribes has been forced from the forest it called home by a major dam project.