South Africa v Pakistan, 1st Test, Johannesburg, 1st day February 1, 2013

Pakistan take opening-day honours


Pakistan 6 for 0 (Hafeez 6*, Jamshed 0*) trail South Africa 253 (Kallis 50, Hafeez 4-16) by 247 runs
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

Pakistan ended a fascinating opening day of the series with the advantage after chipping South Africa out for 253 at the Wanderers. Mohammad Hafeez bagged career-best figures of 4 for 16 to run through the lower order, building on a consistent performance from the visiting attack throughout the day, as the early exchanges lived up to the hope of a competitive series.

Only Jacques Kallis posted a half-century; sharp catching aided Pakistan's efforts while the bowlers shared the early wickets around, before Hafeez nipped in. Younis Khan, who before today had seven Test wickets, provided a huge bonus for Pakistan when he claimed Hashim Amla in his first over, and Hafeez struck first ball to remove AB de Villiers.

Junaid Khan, the left-arm quick, was the overall pick of the attack, maintaining his accuracy throughout the day, but it was Hafeez who ended with the biggest haul. Having been given the new ball mid over, he removed Robin Peterson, shouldering arms, and then had Dean Elgar caught down the leg side. South Africa lost their last five wickets for 21, including a poor run-out of Vernon Philander, to leave Pakistan with two overs to face before the close.

Misbah-ul-Haq deserves much praise for an excellent day as captain. There was an element of luck in Younis' surprise role, but it was smart use of Hafeez to keep him in the attack with left-hand batsmen at the crease, rather than opt for what would seem the more obvious choice of a quick with the new ball. Yet, it is a role Hafeez is used to performing.

Despite the openers falling in consecutive overs before lunch, a stand of 79 between Kallis and Amla was threatening to pull South Africa away in familiar style. However, moments after reaching a 74-ball fifty, Kallis failed to keep a sweetly struck pull shot down and Asad Shafiq made significant ground from deep square-leg to hold a fine catch.

Kallis' innings had shown the side of his game that has evolved in the latter part of his career; a counter-attacking ability to seize the initiative. Both he and Amla played Saeed Ajmal confidently, milking him for four an over in his first spell, although ironically it could have been the fact that Ajmal, who ended up wicketless from 23 overs, did not pose a huge threat that encouraged Misbah to give Younis his profitable trundle. With his third ball, Younis dropped one short outside off stump, Amla cut it but did not keep the shot down and Azhar Ali, at gully, clung onto a flying chance above his head.

What will frustrate Smith and Gary Kirsten is the number of wasted starts. South Africa had appeared to battle through the toughest conditions when Smith and Alviro Petersen, leaving as much as they could early, blunted Pakistan's early efforts. However, one of the factors that makes the Wanderers such a good Test venue is that the bowlers always have some encouragement.

Junaid, having return for a second spell, made the breakthrough when he found Petersen's edge by cramping him for room from round the wicket as he tried to play to leg. In the next over Smith, who had been the focus of so much attention in the build-up to the match, was also guilty of aiming across the line, and he edged a full delivery from Gul.

There had been plenty to distract Smith leading to this match, as he became the first man to lead in 100 Tests and on his birthday, but he seemingly managed to put those events to one side. He looked steeled for a typically tone-setting innings and was angry with himself at the mode of dismissal.

Amla and Kallis, the two pillars of South Africa's middle order, firstly consolidated either side of lunch, and then started to expand their strokeplay, including a period of four consecutive boundaries between them. By tea, however, both had been removed and, unlike the New Zealand attack of a few weeks ago, Pakistan kept applying pressure.

There was a hint of controversy early in the final session - not for the first time sparked by the DRS - when Pakistan were convinced that Faf du Plessis had edged debutant Rahat Ali to the keeper. They reviewed the not-out decision by Billy Bowden and the TV umpire concluded there was no conclusive evidence to overturn although there was a growing consensus a short while later that there was a mark on the edge.

Pakistan used up their second review eight overs later when they thought de Villiers was caught down the leg side off Ajmal, but did not have to wait much longer for success. Hafeez's first ball was floated wide of off stump, de Villiers pressed forward and Sarfraz Ahmed snapped up the outside edge.

Already in a young Test career, du Plessis has rescued South Africa more than once but this time, having reached 41, departed in curious style after playing a forward defensive which sent the ball rolling slowly back towards the stumps to knock off a bail. Du Plessis held his pose for so long that he could have had time to turn and kick the ball away. The rest departed in an unexpected hurry, but judgements on the total will need to be held until South Africa's attack has responded.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Gavin on February 2, 2013, 12:34 GMT

    SA now 46 for 0 after 9 overs. Already got past Pakistans score lol. Deja Vu of the NZ series here. If this goes to the same format, then at least Pak will have a better innings second time round. Smithy is looking to dominate here and is looking dangerous. Big lead on the cards here.

  • Dummy4 on February 2, 2013, 12:07 GMT

    hahahaha...Pakistan is being shown where the truly belong minnows.

  • Gavin on February 2, 2013, 12:05 GMT

    @Utkarsh Singh - Do you mean pakistan? They have not played at home since 2009 so they are ALWAYS touring. Whay they need is a good solid openeing pair for a start. Jamshed while looks like he has decent technique in ODI's has never played test cricket before and was exposed here. And as for Hafeez, when your opening batsman is your best bowler, you know you sre in trouble, seriously.

  • Harmon on February 2, 2013, 12:00 GMT

    Baffling that Smith didn't enforce follow on. May be he wants CSA to earn some extra gate-money else it was 2 day test.

    I bet we will not be seeing Pak fan showing their faces here for a long long time now. But on 2nd thoughts, losing and losing like this is something Pak must be habitual of. After all, they have been out for less than 100 successively on 2 diff occasions and in fact once in the same match so its not as if Pak fans would have seen they had never seen before. What is shocking is that although the facts were there in front of everyone and we all knew what was going to happen to Pakistani lambs in SA, the Pak fans were simply unwilling to admit their team's weaknesses and in the momentum of their excess chest-thumping tey started calling Steyn as over-rated, Philander as good for only 10 overs, Kaliss as old, ABD as a joke & Amla as a walking wicket.

    In a way they were right about Philander cos he doesn't really need to bowl for more than 10 overs to this Pak team.

  • Harmon on February 2, 2013, 11:50 GMT

    Guys, if you were thinking that this is Pak's worst ever performance in a test match or those 3 sub-100 scores in a month were their worst then you are wrong. I too thought this must be Pak's worst ever. at 49 a.o. it indeed is but in a match as a whole, Pak did something even MORE WORST than any other team in the history of cricket.

    In Oct 2002, playing vs Aus on one of the flattest wickets of the world in Sharjah, Pak were a.o. for HaHa-59 in mere 32 overs on DAY ONE. This was their LOWEST EVER TEST SCORE. Aus scored 310 in their innings. Wait, it isn't over yet, Pak's worst was to become worse pretty soon. In their 2nd innings, Pak cudn't even bat for 25 overs and in fact made their new lowest Test score ever at 53 a.o. This might be the ONLY Test where a team failed to reach 100 in any of the innings.

    Here is the link for that match...

    Pak have done this and then Pak fans claim they are among the Top Teams of the world - Peak of Irony.

  • Dummy4 on February 2, 2013, 11:47 GMT

    Horribly disappointed with Pakistan's collapse.With all due respect to Pakistan,Smith has probably not enforced the follow on due to the possibility of the match ending in 2 days and thereby getting in more game time for t.v,sponsors and fans.The S.A bowling in these conditions is amongst the most difficult to face in the history of cricket.Many of the top order dismissals were unplayable deliveries with swing,seam and bounce proving too taxing.

  • GARY on February 2, 2013, 11:38 GMT

    It will be unreal if SA don't enforce the follow on, the pitch is juicy, bowlers fresh, Pakistani's in bits mentally, get them back in but we do know Smith is extremely defensive, so who knows.

  • Gavin on February 2, 2013, 11:34 GMT

    6 for 8 for Dale. All hail the king! 49 all out is not much better than NZ managed and its theor lowest total ever in test cricket. Not sure why smithy didnt enforce the follow on, the pakistan bastmen much be thinking they never want to bat again, never mind today.

  • Dummy4 on February 2, 2013, 11:34 GMT

    "This is only because thwy are not playing in overseas once they keep on touring more definitely their batting will improve also!"

  • Soso on February 2, 2013, 11:28 GMT

    @Mahmood you're right mate Pakistan have the best bowling attack in the world. Look at what they did to England, and lets forget about what SA did to Australia, NZ and now Pakistan.

    @Cricket_Man you are right bro, Pakistan look well and set for a 3-0 white wash. 40/9.