Pakistan crumble to Steyn

In with a chance at the start of the day, Pakistan quickly saw any hopes of victory fade fast, as their lower order put up minimal resistance against South Africa’s bowling attack.

Starting the day with 278 runs to win, with seven wickets remaining, Pakistan lost an early wicket, albeit that of nightwatchman Mohammad Asif, who popped up to square leg getting forward to one that was a touch too short from Andre Nel. Younis, after thrashing 93 before yesterday’s close, was more reserved come morning, played in a more controlled manner, but still scored at a healthy rate.

He brought up his century by clipping Andre Nel to the midwicket boundary, and it was becoming clear that if Pakistan were to have any realistic hopes of winning the game, Younis would need to do the bulk of the work. However, Dale Steyn, after dismissing both openers cheaply yesterday, returned to the attack, as one kept low enough to disturb Younis’ timber, ending a magnificent 126.

With that wicket, Pakistan’s last specialist batsmen in Misbah Ul-Haq and Shoaib Malik attempted to shut up shop, and somehow force a draw. This allowed South Africa to pile on the pressure, though some of this was released with Graeme Smith’s decision to bring himself into the attack backfiring.

It seemed like it was only a matter of time before the partnership was broken though, and sure enough, Misbah was trapped lbw by Andre Nel. Kamran Akmal was Pakistan’s last batsman of any note, but he made just 9, before falling to Paul Harris.

South Africa brought back their quickest bowlers to face the tail, and the move paid dividends quickly, as Ntini and Steyn shared three wickets in as many overs to bring the game to a close.

South Africa 450 and 264-7 dec.
Jacques Kallis 100
Abdur Rehman 4-105, Danish Kaneria 3-85

Pakistan 291 and 263
Younis Khan 126, Faisal Iqbal 44
Dale Steyn 5-56

South Africa win by 160 runs

Cricket Web Man of the Match: Jacques Kallis (155 & 100*)

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