Plays of the Day October 3, 2007

Significant stumpings and a six

Shoaib Malik brought up his 1000th Test run with a six © AFP

Change of action
The third day Karachi pitch was hardly favourable for fluent batting, but Andre Nel's change of actions in the fourth over would have made things a tad more difficult for the batsmen. He strode in with a normal delivery but then followed one up forming a semi-circle in the air from halfway through his run-up to the wicket. Ending up as a mix between Wasim Akram and Curtly Ambrose, Nel was cut away past point for four. He then tried a Waqar Younis; shielding the ball from the batsmen's searching eyes as he leapt into his bowling stride with both hands together.

Significant six Shoaib Malik was embedded in a spirited rearguard, inching his side towards the follow-on target. He brought his fifty up with a checked straight drive, celebrated it by driving the following ball through extra cover and in the next Paul Harris over, he jigged down the pitch to swat him for a huge straight six. The ball went missing temporarily but a nice way, nonetheless, to bring up your 1000th Test run, in your first Test as captain.

Pierce this, Salman
With a four-man pace attack, South Africa started the innings with a half-umbrella field - a tactic often seen on bouncy pitches across the world. However, as Kallis strode in to bowl the 76th over of the innings, with the ball scuffed up by a dry outfield and a dusty pitch, Salman Butt was honoured with an 8-1 offside field; a slip, a fly slip, backward point, two short covers, short extra-cover, a normal cover and a mid-off. Spare some pity for the lone mid-on in the heat as Kallis duly responded with a wide outside off stump.

Mark Boucher doesn't often get a chance to stump a batsman. Before this innings, he had only 16 from 102 Tests. But today he pulled off two in an innings: Malik and Umar Gul st Boucher b Harris. Stumping 17 brought him level with Ian Healy's record for most dismissals and the next took him past it.

Is that you Gordon?
Danish Kaneria is apparently working hard on his batting and to prove it he even managed his first first-class fifty this season, 65 for Essex in the County Championship. Many in Pakistan might not have seen that innings, so Kaneria decided to show everyone just what he was capable of in a little cameo at the end of Pakistan's innings. First he stepped back and with a Caribbean flourish, flayed Andre Nel past point. But his best came soon after, when a short ball from Dale Steyn was pulled, while swivelling round and pivoting on one foot. Somewhere, Gordon Greenidge would've nodded his approval.