Umar ton helps Pak post strong reply
Left-handed opener Taufeeq Umar made an impeccable century on Saturday as Pakistan made a solid reply on the second day.india Updated: Oct 18, 2003 18:18 IST
Left-handed opener Taufeeq Umar made an impeccable century on Saturday as Pakistan made a solid reply on the second day of the first cricket Test against South Africa.
Umar stroked 16 fours in his 111 and guided Pakistan to 275 for four at close in reply to South Africa's first innings score of 320.
South African skipper Graeme Smith might regret to field just one specialist spinner — Paul Adams (2-70) — on a wicket which offered little to his four-pronged pace attack.
Adams took a brilliant low diving catch off his own bowling which brought curtains on Umar's brilliant six hours 22 minutes effort during which he faced 247 balls.
"A century in a Test match is always special and I am happy that it came against a team like South Africa," said Umar, who also scored a century in Cape Town Test against Proteas last year.
Debutante 27-year-old Asim Kamal made a confident start in Test cricket with an impressive unbeaten 49 and pulled Shaun Pollock over fine leg for a big six with the second new ball.
Kamal and Shoaib Malik (27 not out) faced the seamers with confidence in the last hour and added 52 runs in the last hour as South Africa failed to get further success.
Openers Umar and Imran Farhat earlier laid a solid foundation of 109 runs and scored boundaries freely.
However, the 22-year-old Umar was lucky not to be bowled on 17 when he played on to Shaun Pollock's short delivery — the bails were not dislodged after the ball hit back onto the stumps off his bat without much force.
Soon after, Jacques Kallis couldn't hold onto a hard chance when Umar raised his half century with four boundaries in Andre Nel's fifth over.
Farhat gave fine support to Umar and made 41 with seven boundaries, but was bowled by Adams when he tried to loft the bowler over mid-on but completely missed the line of the delivery.
South Africa came back well in the second session and claimed two wickets for 66 runs. Umar, too, went defensive after Yasir Hameed (16) and stand-in captain Yousuf Youhana (8) fell cheaply.
Youhana's catch gave Mark Boucher his 250th catch in 66 Test matches behind the stumps when Nel found a thick outside edge.
Kamal survived a confident leg before appeal off his first ball in Test cricket, but umpire Darrell Hair turned down Nel's appeal and put on 63 runs for the fourth wicket with Umar.
Umar, who suffered knee injury after playing in two Test matches against Bangladesh in August this year, went to 99 with a square cut off Makhaya Ntini for a boundary and then took a single to complete his fourth century in 16 Test matches.
"I was desperate to make a comeback after missing one-day series against Bangladesh and South Africa," Umar said.