Morning session is crucial: Waqar

Pakistan cricket coach Waqar Younis said fifth day’s morning session would decide the fate of the first Test against South Africa at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

By Adur Pradeep

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Published: Tue 16 Nov 2010, 8:32 AM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 4:02 PM

Classic centuries from Jacques Kallis and Hashim Amla helped the Proteas set a mammoth 450-run target against Pakistan on Monday.

Pakistan made a steady start in their second innings, ending the day at 109-2, and need another 342 runs for victory.

Waqar himself admitted the target is pretty tough to achieve and he would be happy with a draw.

“Realistically it is very hard to win from here, but if you manage a draw from here, it is very much like winning the Test match.”

He said it was a tough Test for Pakistan and the injury to pacer Wahab Riaz made a lot of difference.

“It’s been a real tough Test match for us. As we are a very young side, it is not easy. I am pretty pleased with the performance so far. It was really hard on the bowlers especially after Wahab Riaz was injured.

Asked about the team’s victory chances, he said the morning session will decide the eventual team strategy.

“If you really play well in the first session tomorrow morning, may be from there on we could think about it. But at the moment, I still would say, it (victory chance) is more towards South Africa.

“Cricket is a funny game. You never know what is going to happen tomorrow. It all depends on the first session tomorrow and we shouldn’t lose any wicket at all (in the morning session).

Regarding the wicket, Waqar said: “I think it played really well. It kept going slow and slow, but it is still in favour of batsmen. Both the South African batsmen (Hashim) Amla and (Jacques) Kallis shown that batting is still possible. Even the turn is still manageable. I am not sure how it is going to behave tomorrow but so far it is been pretty good.”

He is pretty pleased with Pakistan’s batting so far in the second innings.

“We have shown some discipline in batting this evening. We played 41 overs and lost only two wickets.”

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