South Africa strike early as Pakistan close on 17-2


Vernon Philander made two early strikes as Pakistan Lost Shan Masood and Azhar Ali on just 17 runs after they got South Africa bowled on 262 runs on day 1 of the third and last Test in Johanseburg.

Masood failed to carry on his form and walked off after scoring just two runs. Philander moved the ball away cleverly from Masood as edged the ball in the hands of De Kock.

Azhar Ali saw yet another failure in the ongoing Test series as departed for naught with blinder from De Kock behind the stumps.

Earlier, Markram filled the damage with a 90-run inning for South Africa and a 126-run partnership with Hashim Amla gave the edge to the visitors over Pakistan.

Markram, who had to pass a fitness test after suffering a badly bruised right thigh while fielding in the second Test in Cape Town, gave a sharp chance to short leg Shan Masood off Mohammad Amir when he had two, but otherwise looked in command on an easy-paced surface.

Markram missed his century by just 10 runs after edging one from his legs to Sarfraz Ahmed who took a good diving catch off Faheem Ashraf’s delivery.

South Africa were looking in complete control with just three wickets down on 229 runs, but Pakistani bowlers made an extraordinary comeback from there to restrict the hosts to 262.

Pakistan were top of their game after Tea, where Mohammad Abbas initiated the destruction by removing Theunis de Bruyn on 49. Abbas’ effort was carried forward by Amir, who removed Temba Bavuma and Zubayr Hamza, who scored 1 and 41 runs respectively. Then Hasan Ali got Vernon Philander for one run.

Quinton de Kock tried to show some resistance, but he found Abbas in the deep as he was trying to score quickly against Pakistani fast bowlers.

Faheem Ashraf took three wickets in the inning, while Abbas, Amir, Hasan took two wickets each. Shadab Khan removed Amla in the proceedings.

It merits mentioning here that South Africa has already won the three-match Test series 2-0 and a win this match will give them a whitewash over visitors.