Pakistan in battle for draw against South Africa

Pakistan had their backs to the wall in the second Test against South Africa after losing three wickets in the space of just eight balls on the fifth and final day Wednesday.

By (AFP)

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Published: Wed 24 Nov 2010, 5:24 PM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 2:50 AM

Pakistan, set a target of 354 runs in a minimum of 82 overs after South Africa declared their second innings at 203-5, had reached 127-3 at tea, needing another 35 overs to bat out for a draw or score 227 for a win.

Captain Misbah-ul-Haq was unbeaten on 45 and Azhar Ali 15 not out at the break after Pakistan lost three wickets in the first two overs after the lunch interval, two of those claimed by left-arm spinner Paul Harris.

The Misbah-Ali stand has so far yielded 61 runs to anchor Pakistan’s hopes of finishing the two-Test series without any result after the first Test ended in a draw at Dubai last week.

Pakistan raced to 66 without loss at lunch, but off-spinner Johan Botha provided the much-needed breakthrough by trapping Taufiq Umer leg-before for 30, before Harris trapped Mohammad Hafeez (34) and Younis Khan (nought) in his next over.

South Africa could have got Ali out in one Morne Morkel over, but wicket-keeper Mark Boucher hesitated to go for an edge when the batsman was on eight.

South Africa - led by Jacques Kallis after captain Graeme Smith injured his finger on Tuesday and was unable to take to the field - used five bowlers but failed to make any further inroads.

Resuming at 173-4, South Africa, looking for quick runs, added 30 in as many minutes before they declared the innings, giving their pace-cum-spin attack 82 overs to force a result.

Paceman Umar Gul removed Mark Boucher (15) in the second over of the day to check South African progress. Ashwell Prince remained unbeaten on 47, while Johan Botha finished with seven not out when the innings was declared.

Left-arm spinner Abdul Rehman, who hit a career-best 60 to save Pakistan from follow-on on Tuesday, finished with 3-81.

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