By BV Swagath
Pakistan defeated World No.1 Test team South Africa by 7 wickets inside four days in the opening Test at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. South Africa resuming Day 4 at 72 for 4 with a deficit of 121 runs to clear made sure that Pakistan batted for a second time.
AB de Villiers, who began the day’s play on 11, came up with a fighting knock of 90 from 157 balls (with 7 fours and a six). The South African One Day Captain didn’t get much support from the duo of JP Duminy and Faf du Plessis. Duminy was lbw to Junaid Khan for a duck while Faf du Plessis was caught and bowled by Saeed Ajmal for 9 (from 55 balls).
Pakistan were frustrated by the 8th wicket stand of 57 between AB de Villiers and Robin Peterson (47* from 67 balls). Junaid Khan broke this partnership with Ab de Villiers driving him into the hands of covers. Saeed Ajmal wrapped up things taking the wickets of Philander and Morkel as SA got bowled out for 232 in 82.4 overs.
Pakistan made heavy weather of the paltry target of 40. Philander took two wickets and Steyn got one as Pakistan slipped to 7 for 3 inside four overs. Skipper Misbah-ulHaq finished the game in the final session with 28* (from 26 balls with 2 fours and 2 sixes) along with Younis Khan (9*) by the 14th over. Khurram Manzoor, who scored 146 in Pakistan’s first innings got the Man of the Match award. The Second and Final Test of this Series begins on the 23rd at Dubai Sports City.