Wickets tumble as South Africa edge closer to series win
by AFP

Ground:Newlands, Cape Town
Scorecard:South Africa v Pakistan
Player:Mohammad Sami, Shahid Nazir, Danish Kaneria, GC Smith, AJ Hall, DW Steyn, M Ntini
Event:Pakistan in South Africa 2006/07

DateLine: 27th January 2007


South Africa were on target to clinch their Test series against Pakistan after a second successive day of tumbling wickets at Newlands Saturday.


South Africa were 36 for two at the close on the second day of the third and final Test after being set to make 161 to win, with captain Graeme Smith unbeaten on 33.


Leg-spinner Danish Kaneria took both wickets for two runs, having Boeta Dippenaar caught behind for three before trapping nightwatchman Paul Harris leg before in the last over.


Seventeen wickets fell for 274 runs during the day, with South Africa bowled out for 182 in their first innings after resuming at 131 for five before Pakistan were dismissed for 186 in their second innings.


Wicketkeeper Mark Boucher hit an aggressive 40 not out to take South Africa to a 26-run first innings lead which could yet prove crucial on a pitch which has helped both seam and spin bowlers.


Fast bowler Dale Steyn, after helping Boucher add 43 for the ninth wicket, took three for 47 in Pakistan's second innings, dismissing both opening batsmen and Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq.


Pakistan were only 95 ahead when Inzamam was seventh man out but tailenders Mohammad Sami and Shahid Nazir put on 55 for the eighth wicket to give their team an outside chance and ensure that the match would go into a third day.


After 15 wickets fell on the first day, the pattern of batting woes continued Saturday when Ashwell Prince was given out in the third over with only two runs added.


Prince was beaten by a Kaneria googly and it seemed that wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal had missed his second stumping chance against the left-hander.


The ball bounced off Akmal's gloves and Yasir Hameed dived forward from silly point to catch it.


Umpire Steve Bucknor gave Prince out caught to the batsman's undisguised surprise. Replays suggested Prince had missed the ball.


Two balls later nightwatchman Harris edged Mohammad Asif to Younis Khan at second slip and South Africa had lost two wickets for two runs. Andrew Hall was quickly caught behind off Kaneria for four.


Boucher went on the attack after a quiet start in which only 18 runs were scored off the first 11 overs, hitting three fours, a two and a straight six in an over from Asif which cost 22 runs. The over included two no-balls.


He slammed Kaneria over midwicket for six in the next over but the partnership was ended when Boucher tried to steal a single off the fifth ball of an over from Mohammad Sami, who replaced Asif.


Boucher dabbed the ball towards third man but Younis Khan chased it from slip and hit the stumps at the batsman's end to run out Steyn.


Boucher did not get a chance to face again because last man Makhaya Ntini was out first ball, leg before to Sami. Boucher made his runs off 36 balls with five fours and two sixes.


Kaneria, bowling into a large bare area at the Wynberg end, took three for 44 and Asif three for 53.


Steyn had Mohammad Hafeez caught at backward point, then swung a ball in to the left-handed Imran Farhat to win an lbw decision before Ntini had Younis Khan caught behind without scoring.


First innings top-scorer Mohammad Yousuf looked threatening before he was bowled for 18 by a ball from Hall which held its line after a series of out-swingers. Hall then had Yasir Hameed caught at gully for 35.


Boucher pulled off a smart stumping to dismiss fellow wicketkeeper Kamran Akmal off left-arm spinner Harris.


Inzamam was caught behind for 22 after surviving two difficult chances, a stumping off Harris on five when the ball turned sharply and bounced too high for Boucher to take cleanly, and a diving chance to Jacques Kallis at second slip off Hall four runs later.


Smith batted aggressively at the start of South Africa's chase but lost opening partner Dippenaar to the third ball bowled by Kaneria when Dippenaar top-edged an attempted sweep to be caught behind.


Nightwatchman Harris lasted long enough to ensure no other batsman would have to go in before he was out to the first ball of the final over.

(Article: Copyright © 2007 AFP)


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