Leg-spinner Imran Tahir came to haunt the country of his birth, Pakistan, by claiming a maiden five-wicket haul yesterday to give South Africa early control of the must-win second Test yesterday.
The 34-year old finished with a career best 5-32, while fit-again paceman Dale Steyn took 3-38 to bundle Pakistan out for 99 all out in 36.4 overs at Dubai Stadium before South Africa finished the day on 128-3.
They lead by 29 runs and enjoyed a good day in their bid to level the two-Test series after losing the first game by seven wickets in Abu Dhabi last week.
Graeme Smith was unbeaten on 67 and nightwatchman Steyn was three not out.
Smith, who looked rusty in Abu Dhabi, hit spinner Saeed Ajmal for two consecutive boundaries to bring up his half-century, as well as taking his team past Pakistan’s total.
Smith and Dean Elgar, replacing Hashim Amla — who failed to come back after returning home for the birth of his child — added 54 before Ajmal had Elgar for 23.
Pakistan also removed opener Alviro Petersen for 26 and Jacques Kallis (seven) on a day when Tahir gave Pakistan a dose of their own spin medicine.
In the morning session, Pakistan’s top-order batsmen were so dismal that No. 9 Babar was top-scorer with 25 not out. Of the six boundaries in the innings, Babar hit three.
Tahir, playing his first Test since November 2011, dismissed opener Shan Masood (21), Misbah-ul-Haq (2) and Akmal (nought) off just 11 deliveries to leave Pakistan in tatters at 60-6 by lunch.
Steyn, cleared to play despite a hamstring injury, had dismissed opener Khurram Manzoor off the second delivery of the match and then dismissed Younis Khan for 10 on a pitch which looked good for batting.
Steyn, doubtful to play after sustaining the injury on Sunday, showed no sign of discomfort as he dismissed Manzoor with a sharp outswinger, which was caught in the gully by Faf du Plessis.
Manzoor, who hit a career best 146 in Abu Dhabi last week, failed to score.
Azhar Ali then put on 38 for the second wicket with Masood before he was trapped LBW by paceman Morne Morkel for 19.
Masood remained steady until he was bowled off an inside edge off Tahir.
N ZEALAND V BANGLADESH
AP, MIRPUR, Bangladesh
Corey Anderson’s maiden century and half centuries by tailenders B.J. Watling and Ish Sodhi lifted New Zealand to 419-8 and a 137-run lead over Bangladesh on the third day of their second Test yesterday.
New Zealand, who have never lost a Test to Bangladesh, were almost in position to win the Test and two-match series after the first was drawn in Chittagong.
Anderson was the star with 116 in only his second Test on a day when the Kiwis scored more than 300 for the loss of five wickets.
Kane Williamson pitched in with 62 and Ross Taylor with 53. Watling and Sodhi remained unbeaten on 59 and a career-best 55 respectively as they took control in response to Bangladesh’s 282.
Shakib Al Hasan was the best of the Bangladesh bowlers, taking 5-97 off 40 overs of legspin.
He made the first breakthrough in the morning, claiming Taylor after New Zealand resumed from 107-3 overnight at Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium.
Anderson and Williamson added 140 runs for the fifth wicket to put New Zealand within 15 runs of Bangladesh’s first-innings total before tea.
Anderson brought up his century with his 11th boundary, cracking Sohag Gazi to the midwicket fence. He had used only 139 balls.
Williamson miscued spinner Abdul Razzak, ending his third straight big knock, after scoring 114 and 74 in the first Test.
With a lead of five runs, Anderson was finally out, driving straight to Gazi at extra cover to give Al-Amin Hossain his first Test wicket on debut.
Anderson made 116 off 173 balls, with 13 boundaries and two sixes.
He took 10 deliveries to get off the mark and had no problems playing left-arm spinners Shakib and Razzak or medium-fast bowler Rubel Hossain, against whom he hit five fours. He even raced through the 90s, with no sign of any nerves.
At 287-6, Bangladesh would have thought they could limit New Zealand’s lead and perhaps bat before the end of the day, but the Kiwi tail patiently dug in.
Shakib completed his 10th five-wicket haul when he dismissed Doug Bracewell on 17, which brought tea, but he could not bag another wicket afterwards.
Fast bowler Neil Wagner’s wicket was the only one to fall in the last session, as Bangladesh tired in the field.
Wicketkeeper Watling and spinner Sodhi, playing his second Test, combined for an unbeaten 84 for the ninth wicket. Watling was the more circumspect of the pair, as Sodhi galloped to his 50 off 59 balls.