South Africa v Pakistan, 2nd Test, Cape Town February 12, 2013

South Africa expect 'grafting' pitch

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South Africa expect to have to put in more work with the bat than they have done in the home season so far in the second Test against Pakistan in Cape Town. Hot weather in the build-up to the match has left the surface dry and set up what Allan Donald called a "grafting wicket," for what could turn out to be the bowlers' first challenge of the summer.

None of the three Tests played so far have gone the distance largely because South Africa's attack has cleaned up opposition cheaply. This time though, they may not have conditions to facilitate that.

"It's not quite a 49 all out pitch," Alviro Petersen, South Africa's opening batsman said after examining the Newlands strip. Although there was rain in the city over the weekend and some is expected on Wednesday, neither Donald nor Petersen thinks the nature of the pitch will change too much and both expect a "good Test wicket," that will provide a more balanced contest.

Pakistan will benefit from that. "If there is one ground where they can bounce back its Newlands," Petersen said. Not only will it be gentler in terms of pace and bounce, it is the surface most likely to provide something for the spinners although South Africa are mindful to keep that to a minimum. "We don't want to bring their spinners into it at all," Donald said.

What it means for South Africa is that more responsibility will fall on the batting line-up than at any other time in the home season. They showed they were ready to front up in the first Test when Graeme Smith chose to bat in tricky circumstances at the Wanderers with a lot of swing on offer.

Their total of 253 appeared below-par and probably was until the bowlers inflated it by dismissing Pakistan 49. "Our bowlers deserve all the praise they are getting because they have often got us of tight situations," Petersen said. "So often, we have a second innings lead and then we can approach batting differently." More aggressively, in other words.

South Africa's recent Test victories have been achieved that way. Because their bowling gives them an advantage, they have been able to bat sides out of the match. At Newlands, Petersen believes they may have to rein that in and he is confident they will be able to. "We've learnt to defend at the right time and attack at the right times. But you have to be able to adjust game plans," Petersen said.

To prepare, Petersen played for Lions in their final first-class match of the summer against Warriors in Port Elizabeth. He had the dual purpose of helping the franchise contend for the title and getting match time against an attack similar to Pakistan's.

Like the tourists, Warriors have a left-armer in Wayne Parnell, and a wicket-taking offspinner. Simon Harmer is no Saeed Ajmal but he is the spinner who has claimed the most scalps this season. Andrew Birch, the Warriors medium-pacer, is also among the leading bowlers in the first-class competition so Petersen feels he got in valuable practice.

Petersen was the only Test batsman to feature in the final round of first-class matches but said the rest had been preparing in their own ways. "We don't want to get into a casual mode," Petersen explained.

While the batsmen prepare for a sterner examination of technique, the bowlers, with the knowledge that harder work awaits them, are being monitored by Donald to ensure they are at their peak. "It's important to keep in check with their attitude every day and that's what we do," he said. "They've got their feet on the ground, they are humble and they know their games inside out."

Donald maintained that the current crop is "without a doubt the best I have seen," but did not get carried away with that admission. He acknowledged their habit of taking wickets off no-balls - which happened twice in the first Test - is "unacceptable," and stressed that they will aim to "stick to the high standards we set for ourselves," at Newlands. With or without assistance, the quicks are guaranteeing they will not let up.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY on | February 14, 2013, 7:06 GMT

    Wicket was watered tuesday and have a tinge of green to it.raining today in cape Town so moisture in the air. Maybe getting hotter later. This could be over by day 3 or 4.

  • POSTED BY on | February 14, 2013, 7:05 GMT

    @ hst84, crashed, edgie and johnnybegood, well there seem to be a flury on my comment. SA is world beater in last 4 years because other teams are not playing well, Most Austrlian and Indian greats have retired during this time, otherwise i do remmeber Allan Donald last test when he retired in desperation of an innings and 360 run defeat, i remmeber all the world cups SA played that how they are humilated, even by pakistan. 2ndly the Dale factor non of his delivery has been ever mentioned in so called bible of cricket the Wisdon, where they had a list of wickets of the century, and the research and other stuff on web and ICC is known to everyone when Philander is adjudged the best player and Saeed Ajmal is not even considerd, and how much SA is playing is evident from the recent AUS-SA series where they just got away. and what SA has ruled ? just been NO 1 recently when PAK destroyed ENG, and lets see till how long they will last. the true CHANPIONS were Austrlians when they were No 1

  • POSTED BY crashed on | February 14, 2013, 5:22 GMT

    @IndianSRTfan correction Adelaide not Auckland - were very tired when I typed this sorry for the typo :p

    well may I remind you - since you replied to Rhygwyn with the same match in mind that it were only Morkel and Steyn (without kallis and (Duminy -still -) and Philander) 50% bowling strength and the batters had come to our rescue - also known as faffing around and ABdV so if the bowling department HAD failed on 50% strength then the batting line up still pulled us through and that is great about this team If the bowlers did not perform the batters made up for it and if the batting have not performed their bowling made up for it. Ask Australia and England what happens if both click. Devastation (Oval, Lords and Perth) As for Steyn not getting wickets of the great SRT and Dravid - look at an earlier post I made both in SC conditions. And what happened years even months b4 cannot be used as an indicator on current form. I expect Vern to play a gem of an innings 2day batting or bowling

  • POSTED BY IndianSRTfan on | February 14, 2013, 0:36 GMT

    @Posted by Rhygwyn on (February 13, 2013, 11:33 GMT) Regarding the "Gems" you mentioned which I had commented upon, lets look at "hard statistical data" from the past. Philander has been out with injuries maybe three times and he has not yet played 15 tests. So I'd say there is a good reason to call him injury prone. Second the SA "TEST" team crumbles under pressure. Yes they do mate you seem to have forgotten Adelaide test earlier in Australia where this same bowling attack was carted for 482 runs in a day. So it appears when attack is taken to them this bowling attack can lose patience and the team which relies on their talented bowlers begins to look helpless especially as there is no quality spinner who can bottle up one end and take wickets. Other comments you mentioned, yes, they are pretty pathetic and lack any logic. SA team is great mate but seems to me the fans are getting overconfident. Just like the Indians few years back and look where it got us.

  • POSTED BY crashed on | February 13, 2013, 22:46 GMT

    @IndianSRTfan I am sure you missed it - Duminy (a spin bowler) got injured in the first test against Australia before he could bat and bowl - Phillander and Kallis got injured before and during the second test in Auckland and we drew both those two tests to the consternation and annoyance of the Ausie fans . They could not took 18 wickets and 20 wickets (Kallis did still bat :P) poor ausies hope they fare better at the indian continent but - on second thought I hope the Indians beat them up for good measure :p

  • POSTED BY crashed on | February 13, 2013, 22:38 GMT

    @Khan Axax 1. R Dravid b Steyn 3 51 26 0 0 11.53 13.1 superb delivery and India are staring down the barrel here! Steyn pitches that on a good length in line with offstump, the ball seams away just a shade, a circumspect Dravid shapes to drive straight, misreads the movement and the ball just shaves the top of offstump 53/5 Test no. 1871 | 2007/08 season Ahmedabad 3,4,5 April 2008 (5-day match) SR Tendulkar c †Boucher b Steyn 7 25 16 1 0 43.75 14.1 142.2 kph, Got him! Steyn rulez. It came in the air, landed on a length, around the middle and off stump line and curved away. Tendulkar stuttered out to drive, the length drawing him forward, and he was then done in by the away movement. He did push his bat slightly outside the line, trying to cover for the away swing but the ball moved fractionally more and kissed the outer edge. Fabulous delivery. Tendulkar's forward movement wasn't as smooth; he stuttered out... 56/3 Test no. 1951 | 2009/10 season Nagpur no need to say more

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 19:54 GMT

    all haters of Pakistan team beloww... get a lifee mann.. this is cricket and as it is very well said cricket is a funny game and things happen... Lets hope to see a good contest and a good game of cricket.... in the end it should always be the game who must be the winner... Pakistani players are new to these conditions and if most of you have forgotten SA was fav to win the series from the beginning so if they do there is no shame... Many so called better teams have been through the same when in SA... so just shut up you all and let the GAME BEGIN......... and dont spoil ma mooddd baggazzz...

  • POSTED BY SirViv1973 on | February 13, 2013, 17:29 GMT

    The dry conditions look as if they might tempt Pak to play both their top class spinners. However I think they need to be pretty cautious here. Even if we see a very dry surface theres no guarantee it will turn early & picking both spinners might just lead to a very unbalanced attack. If the 2 spin option is taken then it will leave Pak with just 2 seamers, one of which is likley to be club bowler Mo Irfan. I think even with a dry surface any team needs 3 seamers for a test in SAF. It's a shame for Pak that they don't have any sort of seam bowling allrounder. Hafeez is a a good enough option as the 2nd spinner & with the club bowler likley to make his debut I really think they should probably stick with a 3rd seamer instead of Rehman.

  • POSTED BY Harmony111 on | February 13, 2013, 16:56 GMT

    You don't need grass on the wicket or even a remotely helping wicket to see Pak rolling over once again. Pak is a team that can get you record low scores even on the most lifeless wickets. You see, in 2002, Pak did the unthinkable. Playing vs Aus on the dead wickets of Sharjah, Pak got all out for 59 in the 1st innings which was their worst test score till then. For any team, even BD and Zim getting all out for 100 is not acceptable, even on a green wicket. So imagine how shameful it must be that a team like Pak went no where near even that 100 run mark. Now add to it that it wasn't a green wicket but a real dead wicket. So it is easy to see just how shocking and inept that batting must have been.

    If you think this is all then you miss out on the punchline of this whole joke of a performance. Pak got 59 in the 1st and when they batted in their 2nd innings, they made their worst score merely their worse score. They got all out for 53.

    59 & 53 was in Sharjah --- and this is Cape Town.

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 16:04 GMT

    i think pak needs to bat and bat long to succeed younis misbah asad nasir all will have to show guts

  • POSTED BY on | February 14, 2013, 7:06 GMT

    Wicket was watered tuesday and have a tinge of green to it.raining today in cape Town so moisture in the air. Maybe getting hotter later. This could be over by day 3 or 4.

  • POSTED BY on | February 14, 2013, 7:05 GMT

    @ hst84, crashed, edgie and johnnybegood, well there seem to be a flury on my comment. SA is world beater in last 4 years because other teams are not playing well, Most Austrlian and Indian greats have retired during this time, otherwise i do remmeber Allan Donald last test when he retired in desperation of an innings and 360 run defeat, i remmeber all the world cups SA played that how they are humilated, even by pakistan. 2ndly the Dale factor non of his delivery has been ever mentioned in so called bible of cricket the Wisdon, where they had a list of wickets of the century, and the research and other stuff on web and ICC is known to everyone when Philander is adjudged the best player and Saeed Ajmal is not even considerd, and how much SA is playing is evident from the recent AUS-SA series where they just got away. and what SA has ruled ? just been NO 1 recently when PAK destroyed ENG, and lets see till how long they will last. the true CHANPIONS were Austrlians when they were No 1

  • POSTED BY crashed on | February 14, 2013, 5:22 GMT

    @IndianSRTfan correction Adelaide not Auckland - were very tired when I typed this sorry for the typo :p

    well may I remind you - since you replied to Rhygwyn with the same match in mind that it were only Morkel and Steyn (without kallis and (Duminy -still -) and Philander) 50% bowling strength and the batters had come to our rescue - also known as faffing around and ABdV so if the bowling department HAD failed on 50% strength then the batting line up still pulled us through and that is great about this team If the bowlers did not perform the batters made up for it and if the batting have not performed their bowling made up for it. Ask Australia and England what happens if both click. Devastation (Oval, Lords and Perth) As for Steyn not getting wickets of the great SRT and Dravid - look at an earlier post I made both in SC conditions. And what happened years even months b4 cannot be used as an indicator on current form. I expect Vern to play a gem of an innings 2day batting or bowling

  • POSTED BY IndianSRTfan on | February 14, 2013, 0:36 GMT

    @Posted by Rhygwyn on (February 13, 2013, 11:33 GMT) Regarding the "Gems" you mentioned which I had commented upon, lets look at "hard statistical data" from the past. Philander has been out with injuries maybe three times and he has not yet played 15 tests. So I'd say there is a good reason to call him injury prone. Second the SA "TEST" team crumbles under pressure. Yes they do mate you seem to have forgotten Adelaide test earlier in Australia where this same bowling attack was carted for 482 runs in a day. So it appears when attack is taken to them this bowling attack can lose patience and the team which relies on their talented bowlers begins to look helpless especially as there is no quality spinner who can bottle up one end and take wickets. Other comments you mentioned, yes, they are pretty pathetic and lack any logic. SA team is great mate but seems to me the fans are getting overconfident. Just like the Indians few years back and look where it got us.

  • POSTED BY crashed on | February 13, 2013, 22:46 GMT

    @IndianSRTfan I am sure you missed it - Duminy (a spin bowler) got injured in the first test against Australia before he could bat and bowl - Phillander and Kallis got injured before and during the second test in Auckland and we drew both those two tests to the consternation and annoyance of the Ausie fans . They could not took 18 wickets and 20 wickets (Kallis did still bat :P) poor ausies hope they fare better at the indian continent but - on second thought I hope the Indians beat them up for good measure :p

  • POSTED BY crashed on | February 13, 2013, 22:38 GMT

    @Khan Axax 1. R Dravid b Steyn 3 51 26 0 0 11.53 13.1 superb delivery and India are staring down the barrel here! Steyn pitches that on a good length in line with offstump, the ball seams away just a shade, a circumspect Dravid shapes to drive straight, misreads the movement and the ball just shaves the top of offstump 53/5 Test no. 1871 | 2007/08 season Ahmedabad 3,4,5 April 2008 (5-day match) SR Tendulkar c †Boucher b Steyn 7 25 16 1 0 43.75 14.1 142.2 kph, Got him! Steyn rulez. It came in the air, landed on a length, around the middle and off stump line and curved away. Tendulkar stuttered out to drive, the length drawing him forward, and he was then done in by the away movement. He did push his bat slightly outside the line, trying to cover for the away swing but the ball moved fractionally more and kissed the outer edge. Fabulous delivery. Tendulkar's forward movement wasn't as smooth; he stuttered out... 56/3 Test no. 1951 | 2009/10 season Nagpur no need to say more

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 19:54 GMT

    all haters of Pakistan team beloww... get a lifee mann.. this is cricket and as it is very well said cricket is a funny game and things happen... Lets hope to see a good contest and a good game of cricket.... in the end it should always be the game who must be the winner... Pakistani players are new to these conditions and if most of you have forgotten SA was fav to win the series from the beginning so if they do there is no shame... Many so called better teams have been through the same when in SA... so just shut up you all and let the GAME BEGIN......... and dont spoil ma mooddd baggazzz...

  • POSTED BY SirViv1973 on | February 13, 2013, 17:29 GMT

    The dry conditions look as if they might tempt Pak to play both their top class spinners. However I think they need to be pretty cautious here. Even if we see a very dry surface theres no guarantee it will turn early & picking both spinners might just lead to a very unbalanced attack. If the 2 spin option is taken then it will leave Pak with just 2 seamers, one of which is likley to be club bowler Mo Irfan. I think even with a dry surface any team needs 3 seamers for a test in SAF. It's a shame for Pak that they don't have any sort of seam bowling allrounder. Hafeez is a a good enough option as the 2nd spinner & with the club bowler likley to make his debut I really think they should probably stick with a 3rd seamer instead of Rehman.

  • POSTED BY Harmony111 on | February 13, 2013, 16:56 GMT

    You don't need grass on the wicket or even a remotely helping wicket to see Pak rolling over once again. Pak is a team that can get you record low scores even on the most lifeless wickets. You see, in 2002, Pak did the unthinkable. Playing vs Aus on the dead wickets of Sharjah, Pak got all out for 59 in the 1st innings which was their worst test score till then. For any team, even BD and Zim getting all out for 100 is not acceptable, even on a green wicket. So imagine how shameful it must be that a team like Pak went no where near even that 100 run mark. Now add to it that it wasn't a green wicket but a real dead wicket. So it is easy to see just how shocking and inept that batting must have been.

    If you think this is all then you miss out on the punchline of this whole joke of a performance. Pak got 59 in the 1st and when they batted in their 2nd innings, they made their worst score merely their worse score. They got all out for 53.

    59 & 53 was in Sharjah --- and this is Cape Town.

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 16:04 GMT

    i think pak needs to bat and bat long to succeed younis misbah asad nasir all will have to show guts

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 14:47 GMT

    i think Pak Will Bounce Back....But No SA having an Advantage of home n they Are No.1 Test Team in the World...So it is difficult for Pak but not Impossible... So i backed Pakistan .....Go greens...!!

  • POSTED BY Rhygwyn on | February 13, 2013, 11:33 GMT

    Some real commentary gems again, lets see what we have; (1) SA bowlers are club-level. (2) Steyn doesn't take wickets on Asian batting tracks (3) Steyn has never taken the wicket of a great batsmen like Tendulkar (4) Philander is injury prone (5) SA don't win on flat decks. (6) SA Test team crumbles under pressure. I'm surprised no-one has mentioned the all time classic "SA can't play spin". Any other statements that fly counter to the hard statistical data from the last 5 years?

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 11:03 GMT

    I think they want pakistan to be happy just to shoot them down again. In cape town there is enough water to keep the whole pitch wet and role it every day for the next couple of days. The pitch will have some movement for the first 2 days and after that movement with the new ball. If you have a good technique you will score runs. Shot sellection should also be good and success will come your way.

  • POSTED BY keptalittlelow on | February 13, 2013, 10:58 GMT

    Pakistan must put up a fight of some sort, no shame in losing against a team of SA calibre, SA are the worthy number ONE team in the world, they are certainly better than Australia when Australia were number one.

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 10:07 GMT

    3 times sa has bowled teams out for les then 50 in the last 18 months 2 of those came in Cape Town.... just saying as a friendly reminder sa's best record in south africa is at Cape Town its also a ground where Big Vern plays hes best cricket and where Kallis got hes first 200. And its in Cape Town where sa has there best record yet... and ppl that says sa is good now but wont be good for a very long time to come remember they have only lost 1 test series in the last 6 7 years so they have been good for some time now...

  • POSTED BY ShanO111 on | February 13, 2013, 9:19 GMT

    yes South Africa has got an outstanding pace attack, the best at the moment and do features among the all time great pace trios but it will get them a little more time, may be another tour to Australia to rise up to the 33rd degree as they were completely neutralized by Clarke and co. in the last series between the two. They need to get patient when things dont go their way, they were really clobbered all over the park by Clarke and Hussey. They also miss a genuine world class spinner in their ranks and what will happen when Kallis, the best cricketer of the modern era, retires.

  • POSTED BY TommytuckerSaffa on | February 13, 2013, 8:47 GMT

    KEEP CALM PAKISTAN. Its not going to be flatbed like back in India/Pakistan, it will be probably be a bit slower but will still do something with the new ball and offer a bit to the spinner on day 4/5 (if we get to day 5)

    Can the 49ers bowl Pakistan out cheaply again? We will have to wait and see. I am looking forward to watching the big man bowl too.

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 7:38 GMT

    This is the test for Pakistan to come back and to show SA where they stand!

  • POSTED BY Johnny_Stumps on | February 13, 2013, 7:29 GMT

    @ Khan Ajax... You are very misinformed. South Africa have not lost a test match for many years now. The kast test match they lost was against Sri Lanka in Durban. South Africa have only lost 4 away tests since mid 2006! That will be 4 away loses in 7 years this September! :)

  • POSTED BY IndianSRTfan on | February 13, 2013, 7:12 GMT

    @Posted by Wayne Carter on (February 12, 2013, 22:41 GMT) - : Very surprising how your comment ended up in featured comments section. I'd think in a SA-Pak series, comments should be more about these two teams. I don't deny India has played poorly both at home n abroad. In addition to poor techniques, poor player selection and workload management being few reasons for it. But single biggest reason was overconfidence. And that is why mate, don't count your chickens before they hatch. Don't be overconfident. SA team is one of the all time bests but they are known to crumble under pressure. Your bowling is great but what will happen if Steyn gets injured? Philander is injury prone too. Take these two out and your bowling becomes weak too. What will happen to India when they tour SA later will be seen at that time, right now focus on SA-PAK series k? And Pakistan have brilliant bowlers, and in addition smthng tht SA lack. Quality Spinners Their batting is a different matter though. Fragile

  • POSTED BY edgie on | February 13, 2013, 6:38 GMT

    @Khan Axax, if SA bowlers are as you put it "club level" when they tour outside of SA,then all other teams are under 11 level players when they play south africa ANYWHERE. And it's quite clear you have only been following cricket for last 9 weeks as u clearly have no knowledge of the last 4 years of the Proteas dominance of test cricket, and the majority of that dominance has been OUTSIDE of South Africa. Think you need to read a few Wisden Almanacks do some (much needed) research before you say anything else that would embarrass you and the country you come from...

  • POSTED BY hst84 on | February 13, 2013, 6:17 GMT

    @khan axax: If SA bowlers are not in the groove when playing in the sub continent, then they wouldn't have drawn test series with India and won from Pakistan in 2007. We'll see how both teams fare in the remaining test matches against each other. Shoaib Akhter's did get noticed after his first or second test match but it was a short term achievement because Shoaib managed only 178 and 247 wickets in Test and ODI's and played only 47 test matches compared to Steyn whose still going on with the same vigour and fitness. So its like getting noticed isn't much of an achievement, its how long you can prove yourself for your country.

  • POSTED BY matchfixerpkn on | February 13, 2013, 6:08 GMT

    cape town is hunting groiund agianst srilnaka not as easy agianst pak.. pak got 100% better fast and spinners than srilnaka..

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 6:05 GMT

    South Africa VS Pakistan 2nd Test in Cape Town Pakistan is a good team & South Africa is a Balanced team. Pakistan try to level the Serise & South Africa will try to win to confirm the Serise.I think 55% probability for S.Africa because they are a balanced in bowling & batting line is very strong.

  • POSTED BY SherjilIslam on | February 13, 2013, 6:01 GMT

    No high hopes from Pak batting.It will be great for them even if they cross 250+ in either of the innings. In any case Pak has to work really hard to make a match of it becoz they lag SA in all departments and since test cricket is a two innings affair, it allows a a good team to come back.So all i can say to Pakistan is good luck.

  • POSTED BY sanjaycrickfan on | February 13, 2013, 5:24 GMT

    Pakistan's batting is poor quality. They have the likes of Azhar Ali, Hafeez, Younus Khan, Shafiq who will be clueless when the ball swings and bounces around. The most they can do is defend and dont have the game to attack. Their bowling also looks inexperienced and impotent. Maybe this dry, slow pitch will work in their favor or maybe not.

  • POSTED BY on | February 13, 2013, 5:06 GMT

    how one can say that SA bowling attack is great, they are just playing in very much bowling friendly wickets, bring them to asia and then they are just a club level bowlers, pakistan bowling has always shown great character every where all arround the world they grow up in baitting friendly conditions but still the greatest of all are produced by pakistan. yes baitting is our concern but on sub standerd pitches like SA have any baitting will strugle, AUS got out for 40+ even SA got out for some 90+ so its the pitches and not the SA bowlers, as they dont have impact arround the world. Dale styne after getting 300+ wickets got recgonised that he is a bowler and shoib akhtar had his impact the day he came on the scene of cricket, dale styne has no wickets to mention like the wickets of the great Dravid and Greatest Tendulkar on flat surface.

  • POSTED BY david44 on | February 13, 2013, 1:17 GMT

    Pakistan's batting is fragile on top of that they are up against the world's best bowling attack not like against some low caliber Indian or BD bowling attack they could rotate their batting for i.e drop younus and Azher down in the order and bring Misbah and Shafiq up, but here Pakistan needs to play positive and patience is the key with this batting line, as far as SA is concerned they will not give a hint of spin on these tracks their fast bowling dep. is successful and they will keep it up.

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 22:41 GMT

    This should be a more even contest, the three pacers have to be junaid irfan and tanveer. Luckily this side has shown some fight by bowling the saffers out, and posting a decnet score in the 2nd innings.

    Can't imagine how the kings of the subcontinent would fair here... 0-9 definitely, 125km/h express pace and flat track no feet movement foward defence shots would not cut it... Well done Pakistan for showing some fight, goodluck for rest of the series

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 21:14 GMT

    Don't have much faith in the Pakistan batting line up, there fickle,spineless and have a tail longer than t.rex. Pakistan bowling is better but south africa's batting is class

  • POSTED BY SurlyCynic on | February 12, 2013, 21:09 GMT

    It'll be a tough test. You can't expect to bowl international teams out easily every time.

    Looking forward to it, the gap between tests has been too long.

  • POSTED BY Omarrz on | February 12, 2013, 20:50 GMT

    Play Abdur Rehman in place of Rahat and Imran Farhat in place of Azhar. Yonis can be the 3rd seamer.

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 20:28 GMT

    Pakistan showed in the second innings in Joburg that they had learned some lessons. Expect this test to be closer. I believe Amla will do fine against the spinners. So will JK. Hopefully De Villiers can keep cool and not get out before he should. Anyway - good luck Proteas.

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 19:53 GMT

    There will be no scores under 50 on a dry pitch. Any knowledgeable person is aware that Pakistan is a good team and can't be expected to play badly twice in a row.

  • POSTED BY DeckChairand6pack on | February 12, 2013, 19:32 GMT

    The first day at the Wanders offered assistance to the 49ers attack, but as soon as the track flatened out, they fired blanks. As worrying for Pakistan as their batting failures will be that their attack was bossed by the Proteas in the 2nd innings. I have a feeling someone in the SA lineup is going to get a big ton. Maybe AB, maybe home town boy Jacques Kallis, maybe both!

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 18:22 GMT

    The weather can change rapidly in Cape Town so atmospheric conditions are not bound to be consistent over the 5 days.

    If the pitch gives less assistance, maybe the weather will?

    Who knows ...

  • POSTED BY Vandrg on | February 12, 2013, 18:18 GMT

    I think they just bluffing by saying its not quite a 49 all out wicket , We all know it will be , only way pak can push this match is if they bowl first ,

  • POSTED BY hasyboi11 on | February 12, 2013, 18:15 GMT

    the pakistanis have to be at there best here if they want a chance to be any where near A 2-1 VICTORY! GO PAKISTAN : ) WE bELieVE IN U!

  • POSTED BY khurramsch on | February 12, 2013, 18:13 GMT

    This is the ground where in last 12 months teams have been out for under 50. may be a dry surface but still these SA pitches are not like aisan pitches. so Equation remains same "can PAk batsmen play SA bowlers better enough".

    Some people calling in Rehman for ajmal, i dont think so. rehman is a good but simple left arm bowler. Ajmal has different variations. Should go with 3 seamer. but need to replace rahat.

  • POSTED BY gsingh7 on | February 12, 2013, 17:38 GMT

    grafting means limited grass pitch but that will be enough for getting pak out inside 50 runs , come on sa win 3-0

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 17:12 GMT

    I think it won't be a surface to play both spinners, Ajmal and A Rehman. it may provide some turn but it will not be a slower wicket like Abu Dhabi. A Rehman can be a good choice on such a wicket as his deliveries grip and take sharp turn which can be tricky for right handers.

  • POSTED BY mzm149 on | February 12, 2013, 16:41 GMT

    Good news for Pakistan. They should still play with one specialist spinner (Ajmal/ Rahman) because they have Hafeez as the second one. I hope pitch is also friendly in terms of swing apart from pace and bounce. Good luck team Pakistan!

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 16:33 GMT

    if its a dry wicket then expect Ajmal to play a substantial role and the match wont be that easy for SA to win,always wanted to see how Amla faces Ajmal in a pitch which helps spinners,if the pitch report is true then it will be a very close contest

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | February 12, 2013, 15:58 GMT

    Well looks like it will help spinners if it seems dry. Often you hear that parched surfaces are spin friendly. Only thing is that Cape Town has been SA's happy hunting home ground in tests.

  • POSTED BY getsetgopk on | February 12, 2013, 15:38 GMT

    What is a grafting pitch? Will it be on the slowish side and will it help the spinners? Well I dont think so, and Misbah and Whatmore would be wise not to look too much into that. So often we hear things about the state of the pitch from the opposition and on the game day what we see is the complete opposite. But suppose it does help the spinners a bit but SA is no Eng, dont expect them to capitulate against Ajmal so maybe a draw at best? Should be a good contest though, provided what petersen and donald said is true.

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 15:33 GMT

    pak team should be 1. nasir 2. hafeez 3. azhar 4. younas 5. misbah 6. asad 7. sarfaraz 8. tanveer 9. rehman 10. junaid 11. irfan

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  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 15:33 GMT

    pak team should be 1. nasir 2. hafeez 3. azhar 4. younas 5. misbah 6. asad 7. sarfaraz 8. tanveer 9. rehman 10. junaid 11. irfan

  • POSTED BY getsetgopk on | February 12, 2013, 15:38 GMT

    What is a grafting pitch? Will it be on the slowish side and will it help the spinners? Well I dont think so, and Misbah and Whatmore would be wise not to look too much into that. So often we hear things about the state of the pitch from the opposition and on the game day what we see is the complete opposite. But suppose it does help the spinners a bit but SA is no Eng, dont expect them to capitulate against Ajmal so maybe a draw at best? Should be a good contest though, provided what petersen and donald said is true.

  • POSTED BY Sinhaya on | February 12, 2013, 15:58 GMT

    Well looks like it will help spinners if it seems dry. Often you hear that parched surfaces are spin friendly. Only thing is that Cape Town has been SA's happy hunting home ground in tests.

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 16:33 GMT

    if its a dry wicket then expect Ajmal to play a substantial role and the match wont be that easy for SA to win,always wanted to see how Amla faces Ajmal in a pitch which helps spinners,if the pitch report is true then it will be a very close contest

  • POSTED BY mzm149 on | February 12, 2013, 16:41 GMT

    Good news for Pakistan. They should still play with one specialist spinner (Ajmal/ Rahman) because they have Hafeez as the second one. I hope pitch is also friendly in terms of swing apart from pace and bounce. Good luck team Pakistan!

  • POSTED BY on | February 12, 2013, 17:12 GMT

    I think it won't be a surface to play both spinners, Ajmal and A Rehman. it may provide some turn but it will not be a slower wicket like Abu Dhabi. A Rehman can be a good choice on such a wicket as his deliveries grip and take sharp turn which can be tricky for right handers.

  • POSTED BY gsingh7 on | February 12, 2013, 17:38 GMT

    grafting means limited grass pitch but that will be enough for getting pak out inside 50 runs , come on sa win 3-0

  • POSTED BY khurramsch on | February 12, 2013, 18:13 GMT

    This is the ground where in last 12 months teams have been out for under 50. may be a dry surface but still these SA pitches are not like aisan pitches. so Equation remains same "can PAk batsmen play SA bowlers better enough".

    Some people calling in Rehman for ajmal, i dont think so. rehman is a good but simple left arm bowler. Ajmal has different variations. Should go with 3 seamer. but need to replace rahat.

  • POSTED BY hasyboi11 on | February 12, 2013, 18:15 GMT

    the pakistanis have to be at there best here if they want a chance to be any where near A 2-1 VICTORY! GO PAKISTAN : ) WE bELieVE IN U!

  • POSTED BY Vandrg on | February 12, 2013, 18:18 GMT

    I think they just bluffing by saying its not quite a 49 all out wicket , We all know it will be , only way pak can push this match is if they bowl first ,