Dubai: Pakistan were staring at defeat in the second Test in the face after South Africa out-batted them and then bowled well on the third day here on Friday.
South Africa, seeking a series-levelling win, once again rocked Pakistan’s top order with three early wickets after compiling a mammoth 517 in their first innings for a big 418-run lead at Dubai stadium.
At the close, Pakistan captain Misbah-ul Haq (42) and Asad Shafiq (28) were at the crease but they still need a whopping 286 runs to avoid an innings defeat or bat out two days to force a draw. The duo have added 62 for the fifth wicket and would need a Herculean effort to avoid defeat.
But South Africa’s bid for victory, and keeping their seven-year unbeaten away series record, was tainted when they were docked five penalty runs by the on-field umpires after television replays showed Faf du Plessis apparently trying to tamper with the ball in Pakistan’s 31st over.
But even that South African setback couldn’t save Pakistan as they continued to slump after finding themselves on two for two at lunch.
Dale Steyn gave South Africa an ideal start as he removed Shan Masood with the fourth ball of the innings, having him trapped in front of the wicket with a sharp delivery for nought. It became two for two when Khurram Manzoor fell for his second duck of the match, caught off a miscued drive off Vernon Philander from the fifth ball of the second over.
Manzoor had made 146 in Pakistan’s seven-wicket in last week’s Abu Dhabi Test. Azhar Ali and Younis added 46 for the third wicket before part-time spinner Jean-Paul Duminy struck with his first ball, trapping Ali lbw with a low delivery for 19.