Pakistan avoid innings defeat as SA sense series victory at Newlands

Waseem Ahmed 21:22 05/01/2019
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Kagiso Rabada picked up four wickets.

Pakistan‘s batsmen rallied to avoid an innings defeat but South Africa will need just 41 runs on the fourth day of the second Test in Cape Town to wrap up a 2-0 series win.

A century stand between Asad Shafiq and Shan Masood and a dogged 72 from Babar Azam enabled the tourists to reach a respectable 294 in their second innings.

It might have been wrapped up with two days to spare but for some farcical scenes in the closing overs of the day.

With a lead of only 25 and the prospect of an extra half-hour to produce a finish, Vernon Philander looked to have finished off the innings when Mohammad Abbas slogged a length ball to mid-off.

But, with the players already sprinting from the field, replays showed that Philander had overstepped and the batsman earned a reprieve.

That was the cue for an over of mayhem from Shaheen Afridi, who mowed 12 vital runs off Dale Steyn, including a top-edged four, a straight six, a dropped catch and a hit on the helmet.

By the time Afridi’s innings was eventually ended to give Kasigo Rabada his fourth wicket of the innings, the moment had passed and the umpires decided to end play for the day.

South Africa, already 1-0 up, had earlier taken their overnight score of 382-6 to 431 and move into a comfortable position.

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