Alert Sign Dear reader, online ads enable us to deliver the journalism you value. Please support us by taking a moment to turn off Adblock on

Alert Sign Dear reader, please upgrade to the latest version of IE to have a better reading experience



Your Name:

Recipient Email:

AB de Villiers defied Pakistan's attack with a brilliant 90 but was caught off paceman Junaid Khan who finished with 3-57. -File photo
AB de Villiers defied Pakistan's attack with a brilliant 90 but was caught off paceman Junaid Khan who finished with 3-57. -File photo

ABU DHABI: Pakistan survived top order batting jitters on Thursday to notch a rare seven-wicket victory over top-ranked South Africa with more than a day to spare in the first Test.

Pakistan required 40 runs for its win over the Proteas in six years but Vernon Philander and Dale Steyn reduced them to 7-3 before captain Misbah-ul-Haq (28 not out) secured the victory with a straight six off Robin Peterson and guided the team to 45-3.

South Africa, which conceded a huge 193-run lead in the first innings, was earlier bowled out for 232 at the stroke of tea on the fourth day with A.B. de Villiers playing a fighting knock of 90 off 157 balls and Peterson unbeaten on 47.

Offspinner Saeed Ajmal took 4-74 while seamer Junaid Khan claimed 3-57 as South Africa batsmen struggled to adjust to the slow and spinning wicket of Sheikh Zayed Stadium.

Thursday's win was Pakistan's only fourth Test win in 22 Test matches against South Africa with the last one came at Port Elizabeth in 2007.

Only in February the Proteas had whitewashed Misbah's team 3-0 at home, but in subcontinent-like hot and humid conditions of United Arab Emirates, Pakistan proved that at No. 6 conditions suited them more than their No.1 ranked rivals.

Earlier, A.B. de Villiers made a gritty 90 off 157 balls with seven fours and a six but gave a tame catch in the covers while Peterson missed his half century and ran out of partners in South Africa's otherwise disappointing batting.

Resuming at the overnight 72-4, nightwatchman Dale Steyn (7) resisted for 44 more deliveries and took the team's total to 104 before he finally ran out of patience and was clean bowled by left-arm spinner Zulfiqar Babar (2-51) off his third delivery of the day.

J.P. Duminy looked shaky in his brief stay as seamer Khan had him trapped leg before wicket for zero.

Babar should have had the wicket of Faf du Plessis on 6 before lunch but wicketkeeper Adnan Akmal, who featured in three of the four dismissals on Tuesday afternoon, couldn't hold on to a thick edge.

De Villiers was the only South African batsman to read the spinners well as he raised his half century with a straight six over Babar's head besides hitting four boundaries in his half century.

De Villiers was familiar with the pitch at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium as he made his career best unbeaten 278 against Pakistan in the drawn Test in 2010.

But Pakistan struck immediately through Ajmal after lunch when he made a good reflex one-handed low catch off his own bowling before de Villiers departed after putting up an innings-best partnership of 57 with Peterson. South Africa still trailed by 3 runs when de Villiers was dismissed but Peterson and Philander stretched the lead to 39 by adding 42 for the ninth wicket.

Ajmal got rid of the last two wickets in three balls when he had Philander caught behind and No. 11 Morne Morkel gave the offspinner a simple return catch at the stroke of tea interval.

The second Test starts at Dubai next Wednesday and Pakistan will be looking to threaten South Africa's record of not losing an away Test series since 2006.

Comments (55) Closed

Riaz Khoso Oct 17, 2013 02:06pm

keep working! And mind its cricket nothing can be predicted.

Tarun Oct 17, 2013 05:00pm

Greattttt news... Pakistan is a team which thrives on chaos. When you have no expectations from them, they perform at best and do a major upset and when they are expected to win easily ..they tend to lose. Anyways a big win for Pakistan over SA.

Sarah Oct 17, 2013 05:07pm

Congratulations to Misbah and Pakistan for excellent victory over Number 1 Test squad in world.It looks Number 1 Test squad is on paper only.Finally Graham Smith being made to bite dust in UAE .Remarkable achievement by Pakistan team being first team in world to beat Proteas to mesmerize them in 2 years.Pakistan should bring in Umar Akmal/Ahmad Shahzad to replace Azhar Ali in 2nd Test.Misbah sent Graham Smith's men out of ground for straight sixes over their head.Stil time for Graham Smith to run away from UAE because you cannot win any more this 2 test series.

Satyendra Oct 17, 2013 05:07pm

Congrats Pakistan!! This is a great win!! This is good start to the series... continue the same intensity and bring back the good ol' Paki Killer instinct!!

Bashir UAE Oct 17, 2013 05:11pm

Well done Pakistan Cricket team won the first cricket test against S Africa by 7 wickets. It is team victory . They bat well and ball well. They desrved victory. Special CONGRATULATIONS to PAKISTAN Team.

sami Oct 17, 2013 05:19pm

Congratulations to Pakistan team. It was team effort. Can Pakistan do the same second time. Yes, If batsmen give more than 300 runs to bowlers to bowl at then Pakistan can win the second test also. Misbah has the brain to use his bowlers and contain SA under 250. Misbah you are "Tuk Tuk WINNER" without you beating SA was not possible.

Dr. Salaria, Aamir Ahmad Oct 17, 2013 05:13pm

Well done green-shirts. Keep it up and hang on tough. for sure, mental toughness including unity, faith, discipline and perseverance in your ranks on and off the field of cricket will for sure result in great dividends like this well deserved but almost unbelievable victory against the top ICC ranking test cricket team of the world. Keep you heads up, pray to God Almighty for better and don't get complacent or take it easy any more. For sure, when you believe in yourself, anything is possible including victory over the top ranking test team of the world.

Rogers Evans Oct 17, 2013 05:29pm

Well done, Pakistan. Congratulations ! Please keep it up.

Sarah Oct 17, 2013 05:23pm

Graham Smith 's men sent to bite dust in UAE.Congratulations to Pakistan Captain Misbah and men in green.Excellent team effort and history of England 3-0 is repeating again.Misbah is best Captain in the world.

Burki Oct 17, 2013 05:42pm

it's great work by Pak team but .. yes a big BUT .... this is not the final judgment on the team's performance. Lets face it, bating is still the weakest link in team's performance and we've seen it here as well in the 2nd inning where both openers suddenly went out cheap. Lets see how the series rolls out further. I just hope the consistent losers & failures like Hafeez, Farhat and Shoib Malik never make it back into the team ever! these pathetic morons aren't good enough to play even in A teams, let alone be a constant features in international teams yet somehow they keep appearing and causing huge bating problems for rest of the team with their consistent failures.

Ratnesh Jachak Oct 17, 2013 05:50pm

@Sarah: you forgot m.s.dhoni who is best wicketkeeper and fine batsman and best captain of the world cricket in any format

shihabalmahmud Oct 17, 2013 05:51pm

all the best pakistan

Kanishk Oct 17, 2013 05:51pm

Congratulation guys... You all deserve it because of the immense hard work you would have put in to achieve this feat. I have always adored Misbah for his cool demeanor and focus-on-the-job kind of attitude. Sadly he doesnt have age on his side. It is hard for Pakistan since because of their political and internal situation no one can visit them but they certainly are a bunch of talented individuals. I would personally love to watch a series between Indian and Pakistan in UAE (who is now Pakistan's "home" country). It would be a series worth watching.

cop Oct 17, 2013 05:51pm

Expect unexpected from Pakistan!

Sarah Oct 17, 2013 06:14pm

@Ratnesh Jachak: But MS Dhoni lost 4-0 against England and Australia.Even lost home series against England 2-1,then how can he be best Captain ? I believe Misbah men even crushed India on their home soil in ODI Series recently.First win against big teams then claim as best captain.Win against Bangladesh doesn't make you best team and best Captain.

Anees Oct 17, 2013 06:27pm

The good part of unpredictability ..

Asif K Oct 17, 2013 06:29pm

Well Done. Pakistan ZINDABAD!

John Oct 17, 2013 06:24pm

Congratulations to Pakistani team .... a very well deserved victory .....

How come did not report about Indian victory over Australia by chasing 359 with 9 wickets in hand .... its the second biggest chase in the history of ODIs .........

US CENTCOM Oct 17, 2013 06:31pm

Pakistan never makes it easy. For a second it looked as if they won

SMQ Zaman Oct 17, 2013 06:40pm

A fantastic win for the Pak. Team and a fabulous 'Baqra-Eid' present to the Nation (which has been suffering like Hell from the onslaught of the Pakistani Taliban and insurgency and only yesterday, the Law Minister of of KPK and PTI - Imran Khan's Party was killed by a suicide bomber in his house in Peshawar whilst greeting people on Eid Day!) and as skipper Misbah said, what "team-work" can do for the underdogs against a Mighty South African Test team ranked No.1 by the ICC World Rankings at 135 pts (and England and India are well-behind with 117 & 115 pts the Proteas), whereas the Pakistanis are currently and relatively the minnows - languishing at No.6 with 101 pts onyl

SMQ Zaman Oct 17, 2013 06:40pm

Eid mubarak to you and the Pak. Team from a loyal, ardent and an old fan [since 1965 as a ten year-old (with my elder brother and a minder) in Karachi re. Pak (captained by the Little Master - Hanif Mohammed and the golden era of the Pak. Team and Cricket), unofficial Test Match (and 3 Test match series) against Michael Tissera's Sri Lanka].

Only a couple of years ago, when many emotive fans were screaming for Misbah's axing, I was telling them that "do not be in haste, as the Team needs him & Yunis Khan badly"!

Please, you must carry on in both forms of the game atleast until the WC 2015; age is only a No., if fitness, mental strength, belief, and hunger for the game is still there; there were some exceptional cricketers, who played beyond the 'ripe-old age 40 years in cricketing parlance only' (one of the most recent examples was fmr. Eng. captain and great - Graham Gooch)

Karachi Wala Oct 17, 2013 06:43pm

Congratulations to team Misbah. However, I wonder what would have been the outcome, had Pakistan required to score 125 -150 runs for victory.

A Kashmiri Oct 17, 2013 06:50pm

@Ratnesh Jachak: come on yar...

Khirman sulehri Oct 17, 2013 07:01pm

What a refreshing news,, many congrats for the Paaakistan,,, your performance is reminiscent of old gold days,, I love you whether you loose or win,,,

ali Oct 17, 2013 07:03pm

Yes it certainly was a rare win, If the lead was at around 100-120 or so they would have collapsed, Misbah again came to Pakistans rescue.In the second test if the batsmen dont wake up they have a poor chance of winning the match, Azhar Ali disappointed in both innings. The bowlers did a good job.

Thabo Makeleni Oct 17, 2013 07:19pm

Well done, Pakistan. I always said that Mohammed Hafeez had to be dropped as he became over-analytical and too serious. Cricket should be played in a care-free manner.

pakfan Oct 17, 2013 07:40pm

Misbah the genius, played with only 4 bowlers and able to contain SA twice under 250. Folks, not easy what Pakistan has done with 4 bowlers. Also batting support helped us achieve the victory. Any changes in batting line up for next test, Azhar looks brittle.

Misbah we need one more victory...

Satyendra Oct 17, 2013 07:47pm

@Ratnesh Jachak.. come on man really!! I agree Dhoni is great and we don't need to blow that trumpet in every blog .. It is not graceful!!This article is about Pakistan's victory and in spite of all the challenges they came out as winners...admire the players who played good and admire their sportsmanship!! Cheers!

pct Oct 17, 2013 09:05pm

thanks alot our cricketers to give us a precious gift of eid..they have reallly big hearts they did not celeberate their eid but give their country a huge happiness..kudos to them..Zainab

Shahryar Shirazi Oct 17, 2013 09:46pm

I smell embarrassment in this win. First, this is being dubbed as an upset. Just a decade ago, we were one of the top three teams in the world along with SA and Australia. Second, a total of 120 to be chased would have been disastrous. We are lucky that only 40 runs were to be scored. Islamization and Politics has got the team to this phase ... I am not happy at this win at all. Shahryar

asim Oct 17, 2013 10:11pm

@US CENTCOM: You must be joking right. Umer Akmal is a goof ball and wastes his talent with brain farts. You cant compare him to Asad. Asad is a solid batsman and a future for Pakistan.

Mudassar Siddiq Oct 17, 2013 10:18pm

Once again we tends to forget our mistakes when we win. Over-cautios approach is killing Pakistan batting talent. Misbah bieng a captain and a pillar in the middle order can make a real change by having a positive attitude in games to come. Pakistan is 1 up. If we can show a little aggression now, we can clean up SA in all forms in this series.

Saeed Masood Oct 17, 2013 10:31pm

A good news after a very long wait,Some one must teach the Pakistan team how to close a match,winning is an art of the game,this why some time teams like Australia come from behind and win the lost match....i have a feeling Moen Khan has the talent may be he can teach them not to get over nervous,

thulluka kolli Oct 17, 2013 10:40pm

Dei Dei...don't dance too much. It is just one test. Everything will become "normal" with pakistan from second test onwards. Wait and watch.

Ramesh Oct 17, 2013 10:41pm

Wow! An unbelievable win indeed. I have been a long standing fan of Pakistani cricket, especially bowling, and believe that the team can be consistent world beaters. All they need is better, corruption free governance. As an Indian, I do hope to see many future tightly fought matches between the two sides.

rohan Oct 17, 2013 11:42pm

Congrats Pakistan, in all worst conditions your country is suffering, defeating the number one team in test matches in a test match, commendable indeed, take a bow whole team.

Ahmed Oct 17, 2013 11:50pm

Heartiest congratulations to Pak team for winning against top Test team. It was combined all round performance , batting , bowling & fielding that brought the win.

Batting clicked in 1st innings but still looks fragile. The way they batted 2nd time, reaching 150 runs looked very unlikely against quality bowling of S.Africa. Keep fingers crossed for the 2nd Test.

cricketlover Oct 18, 2013 01:10am

Terrific performance by Pakistan! No matter what the critics say: It is no mean feat defeating the topmost Test team in the world. What's the big deal if the top-order failed in the 2nd innings? Even the so-called 'best Test batsman' was out for a meagre 10 runs in the SA 2nd innings. So, make no mistake: A WIN IS A WIN, no matter what! The youngsters have shown glimpses of brighter things to come in the forthcoming games. However, it's a foregone conclusion that Azhar will have to step down and give way to Ahmed Shehzad, who surely deserves a chance in Tests as well. Congrats to Misbah & Co. for lifting the game to a level that reinjects the enthusiasm in all the Pakistani fans.

cricketlover Oct 18, 2013 01:20am

@sami: Agreed! Wish to add that Pakistan played with only 4 regular bowlers as against SA's 6 recognised bowlers, yet they won hands down and under so much pressure (to lift their game in the aftermath of the Zimbabwe debacle) that any other team would have just wilted away.

Hafeez Oct 18, 2013 02:37am

What?? Nobody is missing me and Farhat??? After years of service to Pakistani cricket, is this what we deserve? If we hadn't brought the team down to such a low level this victory wouldn't have tasted so sweet. So please give us some credit.

manzoor Oct 18, 2013 02:46am

Well Done, Congratulations!!!!!!!

Burki Oct 18, 2013 08:59am

@Sarah: wow!!! quite childish, aren't we?? just 1 test win and already showering praises like we've won the series. Forgot Zimbabwe? Now, next when the team suddenly collapse like house of cards, you'll be probably be out burning tires on the streets, demanding Misbah be sent to firing squad. As usual, displaying the behavior of utterly emotional people with no room for objective & rational thinking, hurtling from one extreme to another in no time .... that's what we're famous for world over.

HAFEEZ Oct 18, 2013 08:56am

Don't celebrate too much, I am coming back and soon we will be back to loooooosing!

Ravi from Pune Oct 18, 2013 12:30pm

Only cricket is the field that keeps Pakistan on global recognition.

nEo Oct 18, 2013 12:43pm

@Sarah: premature celebrations ;) i am guessing you might have to eat your words later Sarah..

nEo Oct 18, 2013 12:49pm

@Sarah: lol.. i admire Misbah, but comparing him with Dhoni's achievements is way above the line.. i suggest go and check his credentials and then comment... don't make a fool of yourself already..

meanwhile, just 1 win and you guys are jumping jacks already... i would wait for the entire series and then evaluate the overall performance of both teams.. its good that pakistan is off to a wining start, but lets be realistic here... they falter in the second ininigs AGAIN.. no consistency.. had there being 100-150 runs on board to chase, i bet things would have been very different.. Let the dust settle down... wind is still blowing.

Youth Oct 18, 2013 01:27pm

Congratulations & celebrations are justified for defeating world one is no easy task nevertheless more focus on the game should be exercised. Pakistan won convincingly made me very happy but loosing quick wickets in the second innings pose a big question on the mental toughness of the players. Pakistan should have won by ten wickets, in test match 40 plus runs is no big deal.

Maria Oct 18, 2013 02:33pm

@Sarah: lol.. i admire Misbah, but comparing him with Dhoni's achievements is way above the line.. i suggest go and check his credentials and then comment... don't make a fool of yourself already..

meanwhile, just 1 win and you guys are jumping jacks already... i would wait for the entire series and then evaluate the overall performance of both teams.. its good that pakistan is off to a wining start, but lets be realistic here... they falter in the second ininigs AGAIN.. no consistency.. had there being 100-150 runs on board to chase, i bet things would have been very different.. Let the dust settle down... wind is still blowing.

Sarah Oct 18, 2013 03:55pm

@nEo: South Africa will need to take 20 wickets through their spinners on Asian pitches.Otherwise life is going to be too hard for them in UAE where they will be biting dust each and everytime.You cannot win matches in Asia with 4 fast bowlers.Some body must be really fool to use 4 fast bowlers on Asian pitches.So you keep on dreaming of recovery of South Africa.Pakistan can even shut out South Africa from this series by creating complete flat track with nothing for bowlers having already taken 1-0 unbeatable lead.Game,set and match point everything is in favor of Pakistan.

Shahrukh Oct 18, 2013 07:16pm

South Africa is a strong team but they didn't come back but Pakistan was too much well from South Africa if Pakistan win the 2nd test match Pakistan will be international cricket council team ranking they will be No.4 or South Africa will be drop down from No.1 ranking Misbah was been best player in this match

junaid Oct 18, 2013 08:07pm

As Misbah admitted " Unbelievable" and fans agreed, because he knew the batting performance was not up to the standard in 2nd Innings. SA exposed the continuation of symptoms of batting collapse in the 2nd innings. They removed the 3 top order batsmen in 14 runs. I feel we were just lucky to have achieved that victory. If the target was 100 to 150 runs this victory would not have been easy. The 40 runs target should have been achieved without any wicket loss. This is my standard, at the least.

Sarah Oct 18, 2013 08:35pm

@Maria: Well Dhoni and India are even scared of playing against South Africa and England as fear of defeat just drive them crazy.They want to keep on playing 100 tests against Bangladesh as there ICC ranking will be always hundred percent.Just in case you had forgotten your team India performance against England 4-0 and Australia :4-0 ,Again at home England 2-1 and was even crushed by Misbah green shirts on Indian soil in ODI series.So your team is best only against Bangladesh,Ireland,Scotland,Kenya.Keep on playing them forever and don't ever come to UAE because they UAE is death knell for team India and Dhoni forgets batting on UAE as they think UAE to be another Pakistan where Pakistan mesmerizes all team.Enjoy the Pakistan win !

thulluka Kolli Oct 18, 2013 10:36pm

@Sarah: You must be a typical Pakistani, no brain!! Making grand statements after just one win. I would want to see you comment after the 2nd test. Almost certain you will run back into the hole you came from by the end of 2nd test. Now, lay off!

MK Oct 19, 2013 07:28am

Excellent performance by Pakistan and it was a real pleasure to see a team effort with almost everyone chipping in with their contributions.

Things we learned from the first test match

  • Khurram Manzoor should never have been dropped two years ago. I have been raising my voice over the injustice done to this highly talented opener by our selectors who chose to keep going back to tried and tested failures. He should be part of ODI team as well.

  • Adnan Akmal is not the test wicketkeeper we need. Yes he scored a good knock of 32 runs but he dropped two crucial chances which could have proved costly. Sarfaraz ahmad and Muhamamd Rizwan are far better wicketkeepers than Adnan

  • We should stop moaning for inclusion of players like Ahmad Shahzad and Umar Akmal in the test eleven. I am surprised how people can suggest including Umar Akmal in place of Asad Shafiq. Yes, he went through a lean period in Zimbabwe but what about the tour before that? He and Younis khan were the only batsmen on that challenging SA tour who actually coped with their lethal bowling attack. Asad should be in ODI eleven as well

Sarah Oct 19, 2013 09:45am

@Maria: One win against South Africa is far better than 100 wins against Bangladesh and other minnows.That team has not lost since last 2 years.Great achievement by Green shirts.I am proud of them and there achievement.If you don't like it,close your eyes.Best part is Pakistan cannot lose this Test series any more and they are on repeat of England 3-0.Can you imagine what South Africa condition would have been with Abdul Rehman along with Saeed Ajmal and Babar?