South Africa Build Huge Advantage

Graeme Smith raises his bat
Graeme Smith now has five Test double-hundreds.
©REUTERS/Mike Hutchings. Picture Supplied by Action Images

Pakistan 99 (Tahir 5-32) v
South Africa 460-4 (Smith 227no)
Second Test, Dubai, day two

Can ever a day of Test cricket have been more one-sided? South Africa amassed 332 runs on day two at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium for the loss only of night-watchman Dale Steyn.

The innings played by Graeme Smith and AB de Villiers in adding an unbroken 326 for the fifth-wicket are all the more remarkable considering that 13 wickets fell on the first day.

Smith has a habit of scoring big hundreds and closed with the fifth double-hundred of his Test career. De Villiers, meanwhile, notched up his 17th Test hundred and finished on 157 not out.

The sole success for the Pakistan bowlers came in the morning when Mohammad Irfan bowled Steyn with the score on 134 and South Africa’s lead standing at only 35 runs. However, de Villiers and Smith countered any fears about a weakened Proteas batting line-up in the absence of Hashim Amla to grind Pakistan down.

The runs came at a decent rate, with Smith reaching three figures for the 27th time in his Test career off 204 balls and then taking only 58 more to reach 150. His 200 was brought up after tea off 326 balls. De Villiers was quicker to three figures than his captain, taking 152 deliveries.

Pakistan’s bowlers tired in the Dubai heat, with the spin pair of Saeed Ajmal and Zulfiqar Babar getting through more than 70 overs between them of the innings total of 134. Neither could strike today and only have the wickets they took yesterday to show for their efforts. Ajmal has two for 132 off 43.4 overs, with left-arm spinner Babar on one for 112 from 31.2 overs.

Seamers Mohammad Irfan and Junaid Khan have each bowled 27 overs and been largely ineffective, returning combined figures of 54-6-183-1.

South Africa lead by 361 runs after just two days and must surely be confident of squaring the series after their unexpected defeat in Abu Dhabi.

© Cricket World 2013