24 August, 2014 / Shawwal 27, 1435

Misbah, Shafiq hold up South Africa victory bid

Published Feb 03, 2013 01:48pm

asad shafiq, misbah ul haq
Asad Shafiq celebrates his half century as Misbah-ul-Haq looks on. -Photo by AP

JOHANNESBURG: An unbeaten 101-run stand for the fifth wicket between Misbah-ul-Haq and Asad Shafiq kept Pakistan alive in the first Test as they reached 183 for four at the close of play on day three against South Africa at the Wanderers.

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The visitors looked to be heading for a heavy defeat when they slumped to 82-4 before tea chasing down 480, but the pair batted through the final session to give Pakistan hope.

They still need 297 runs to win but with the rain predicted on the final two days all results remain possible.

Misbah (44 not out) and Shafiq (53 not out) batted patiently, seeing out 45 overs in their partnership as South Africa struggled to find a breakthrough.

In part the home side have only themselves to blame. Vernon Philander thought he had Shafiq caught at slip by Graeme Smith when the batsman was on 40, but the Pakistan right-hander was recalled after a check with the third umpire showed it was a no-ball.

In the next over Robin Peterson dropped a simple chance offered by Misbah at point off the bowling of Kallis.

With the new ball due in just five overs on Monday morning, South Africa will still be confident of forcing a result if the weather holds.

Things did not start as well for Pakistan in their second innings though. Mohammed Hafeez made just two as he glanced a leg-side ball from Philander, but succeeded only in providing wicketkeeper AB de Villiers with a catch behind the stumps.

Debutant Nasir Jamshed's stoic resistance came to an end when he attempted a pull off Dale Steyn, but got his timing all wrong and picked out Robin Peterson at mid-on four runs short of a maiden test half-century.

Azhar Ali (18) was trapped in front by Kallis and although he chose to review the decision, the TV umpire upheld his dismissal.

Younus Khan (15) was not sure whether to play or leave a Morne Morkel delivery and in the end did neither, a faint edge being snapped up by De Villiers to leave his side four down.

Earlier in the day, South Africa made a fast start when they resumed their second innings, scoring 68 runs in just nine overs before declaring on 275 for the loss of three wickets.

Resuming on his overnight 63, de Villiers led the charge with a sparkling unbeaten century off 117 balls.

He was ably supported by Hashim Amla, who moved from his overnight 50 to 74 not out by the time Smith called the players in with 50 minutes of the morning session gone.

By that time the pair had put on a Wanderers record fourth wicket test partnership of 176, beating the previous mark of 147 they had set against Australia in the 2011/12 season.

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Comments (31) (Closed)

Aamir Aziz
Feb 04, 2013 01:05am
It is going to be very tough for Pakistan to win or draw (if it rains for two days and there is no play) but atleast they are fighting. Regarding Sam veet's comments, Please stop watching TEST cricket as you don't really understand it. We just scored too little in the first innings and that has put alot of pressure. Best of luck Pakistan!!! Inshallah they will learn and do well in the second TEST.
Feb 03, 2013 06:24pm
Who cares if Pakistan go on to lose big from here? All we want to see is some fight back from both teams and that is what Test Cricket is all about. By the time this Test match has ended, Pak will know how to counter SAF attack.
Feb 03, 2013 03:52pm
Tommorrow by lunch we can see the end of the match.
Feb 04, 2013 10:02am
Only Misbah's painful batting style can safe few hours for Pakistan....rest Pakistan's batting line will be crush next morning sooner or later......
Merchant Iqbal
Feb 03, 2013 10:36pm
I think this test is almost lost by Pakistan unless rain save them.Misbah and Shafiq has not only stay at the wicket but score some runs. First session is very important.If they survive then tailenders has to contribute to bring respectability to the total. If Misbah and Shafiq scored centuries and lower order contribute 100 runs their is chance that Pakistan can upset south africa.
Abdul Razzak Polani
Feb 03, 2013 09:27pm
Pakistan in second inning played better.Though they should have batted in this way In their first innings and the match would have been much exiting.It is still seems that Match tilt in favour of S.A.
Feb 03, 2013 04:06pm
You don't know what test cricket is. Go watch some 20-20. It was such a fine innings by Misbah today and i hope he carries on tomorrow as well....
Feb 03, 2013 04:54pm
Misbah understands cricket better than us and even better than other Pakistan cricketers.That's why he is Captain and he is doing right thing.He is leading by example.
Feb 04, 2013 08:29am
Sam Veet, are you crazy??? This is such a big innings Misbah & Asad are playing. If they can somehow bat like this the next two days, their story will be written in golden words in the history books.
Feb 04, 2013 08:22am
It is very hard to know why SA declare early. i will question only those who knows cricket as for my point of view was a worst decision they should have to play 50 more overs
Feb 03, 2013 04:42pm
its MISBAH running a partnership of 100 with asad................
Dr Khan
Feb 03, 2013 04:39pm
the only way to improve pakistani batting is to get rid of slow local pitches.
Feb 03, 2013 11:30am
Pakistan can win this match. The pitch has eased out and there is so much time left in this match. SA may have made a mistake by an early declaration.
Feb 04, 2013 07:54am
He has other options of entertaining himself. Just open the news pandora of Indian media. He may amuse himself.
Feb 04, 2013 07:51am
You must be on the other side of the divide, thats why cannot digest simple reasons.
Feb 03, 2013 07:42pm
Dear sir, This series will prove whether Mohammad Hafiz has abilit to lead our test team as well. Any how credit goes to Misbah and shafiq for putting up a fight but time is running out for Younis Khan and Azhar Ali. We should see Haris sohail sooner rather than later. Regards, Hyder
Abrar-ul-Haque, Virginia, USA
Feb 03, 2013 07:20pm
Misbah is fighting tooth and nail to save the match. Indeed he is the best and most suited and, in fact, the only player in the current team who has the potential to do that. Killing time by "boring cricket" in such a situation is the need of the hour, try to understand Sam. This is test not ODI and 20/20 cricket. Hats off to Misbah and Shafiq's valiant efforts. Best of luck to Pak team.
Feb 03, 2013 07:16pm
Keep on dreaming.Misbah and Shafiq knows best what they are doing and I have confidence in their ability
Feb 03, 2013 08:32pm
If we can resist up to lunch, we did really good. I see a chance for Steyn's hat-trick.
Feb 03, 2013 08:35pm
When we are losing, we are so vile that we can't even face criticism. Why do you need to be so abusive?
ali wadood
Feb 04, 2013 05:23am
you are afraid of Misbah's patience, in such conditions one has to come to terms with the bowling, field and his shots. Well played Misbah, and please tell your team to atleast reach the double figure and relax.
Feb 03, 2013 04:23pm
Sam Veet........... I suggest u start watching Women's World Cup if u r getting bored......... Still 2 more days to go so what exactly do u want Misbah to do?????? throw it away like Jamshed or Younis????? U sir have no idea what test cricket is about. So better not tease urself by watching resilience and gritty stand of Misbah and Shafiq...!!!
Feb 04, 2013 04:38am
pak have to survive only new ball today...then much batting behind
Feb 04, 2013 04:36am
nicely misbah played...some people dont know about test match and they bork
Feb 04, 2013 04:35am
i admire your optimism =)
Feb 03, 2013 02:17pm
Feb 03, 2013 02:19pm
Pakistan bating line is not resilient and never ever shown such resolve. I will be happy if they last the 4th day of the game.
Khan Baba
Feb 04, 2013 02:39am
What did Hafeez score my friend? This is a test match not IPL.
Sam Veet
Feb 03, 2013 02:11pm
Misbah is the worst player to lead Pakistan. The only thing he excels in is driving the ball directly towards the direction of a nearby fielder, he can do that all day long. I really wonder what his strategy is now? Just to bore the audience to death? He's not showing any willingness to do anything creative or different. The match is lost, but at least do learn something from it and spare us the pain of watching him deliver dot ball after dot ball. He brings the entire teams momentum and morale down. About time he's changed. Hafeez is a much aggressive captain, and he leads by example.
Feb 03, 2013 05:51pm
If you found it boring, you really dont understand the game. It was fascinating to watch them try to take control and not get out., far from boring, but it will take lots if rain and a great battng display to save the game.
Feb 03, 2013 05:33pm
With rain forecast on the 4th and the final day, Pakistan can try to have a draw. One of their greatest escape!