Du Plessis (103) and Bavuma (75) added 156 runs for the fifth wicket, a stand that has threatened to take the game away from the visiting side. South Africa, who bowled Pakistan out for 177 in their first innings, were 382 for 6 in 116 overs, leading by 205 runs, with de Kock and Vernon Philander unbeaten on 55 and 6 respectively.
Resuming the day on 123 for 2, Hashim Amla could not add to his overnight score of 24 and was bowled by a delivery from Mohammad Abbas which snaked back off the pitch to hit his leg stump. Meanwhile, Theunis de Bruyn played a loose drive and was caught at gully off Shaheen Afridi after scoring just 13.
The home team lost two wickets in the opening session and could only manage 65 runs in 27 overs against some accurate bowling. That's when du Plessis and Bavuma took over and ensured that Pakistan does not get any opportunity of making a comeback in the match.
Bavuma, however, appeared to have been caught by Azhar Ali at first slip off Abbas when he was on three and the total was 156 for 4. On-field umpires Bruce Oxenford and Joel Wilson conferred and asked television umpire S Ravi to check whether the ball hit the ground before a clean catch was completed. Oxenford gave a "soft" signal of "out". After looking at numerous replays Ravi overturned the on-field decision because it appeared the ball had touched the ground.
The incident was similar to one at a critical stage of the first Test in Centurion, also involving Azhar Ali, when Dean Elgar survived against Shaheen Afridi after Wilson reversed the on-field decision. A consensus of television commentators was that there was no conclusive evidence to justify Wilson’s decision. Pakistan went onto lose the match by six wickets and give South Africa a 1-0 lead in the series.
Meanwhile, du Plessis, who was out for a "pair" in the last encounter, took some time to settle in before crafting a couple of drives to get going. Both Mohammad Amir and Abbas looked far from their best and mostly operated around 130 kmph. The two batsmen cashed in on most of the bad deliveries and kept the scoreboard moving.
In the process, Bavuma brought up his 13th Test fifty but couldn't convert it into a century as he edged one of Shaheen's delivery to the wicketkeeper. Coming in at No. 7, Quinton de Kock commenced his innings with a couple of cheeky boundaries.
Du Plessis was dropped on 96 by Sarfraz Ahmed before the South African got his hundred with a cover drive. His innings finally came to an end in 109th over when he became Shaheen's third victim, nicking one to the wicketkeeper. The 34-year-old struck 13 fours during his stay in the middle.
Meanwhile, boundaries kept coming off de Kock's willow as the wicketkeeper-batsman went past 2000 runs in Tests. The left-hander brought up his 14th half-century few overs before the curtains were drawn on Day 2.
Azhar Alicape towndena elgarmohammad aamirnewlandsPakistan vs south africa 2018Shaheen Afridisouth africa vs pakistan 2018temba bavuma
First Published: January 4, 2019, 9:54 PM IST