Duanne Olivier took two crucial wickets after six missed opportunities by the Proteas at the start of the first session on day two of the third Test against Pakistan.
After Vernon Philander gave the Proteas the ideal end to day one, picking up two quick wickets, the Proteas needed to keep the pressure on by utilising the slightly tarnished ball to find early swing and seam movement.
The Proteas seamers worked their magic. Philander and Dale Steyn worked hard to unsettle Imam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Abbas, and both batsmen were dropped. Philander set up Abbas and found his edge, but Temba Bavuma dropped an easy chance at slip.
Steyn then set up the talented Imam, who edged the speedster to the slip cordon area, but Theunis de Bruyn went across Elgar and tapped the ball away from what would have been a sitter for the stand-in skipper.
Steyn was unlucky once again, he bowled a beautiful away swinger that Abbas edged, this time Quinton de Kock dropping the catch diving to his right. Shortly after, Steyn walked off the field, after holding his shoulder, the same shoulder that saw him miss competitive cricket for just under two years.
Nooooooo 🙈 @DaleSteyn62 walking off after holding his shoulder. Rightly frustrated as he walks off after two catches were dropped off his bowling, hope the outburst was that and not because of th injury 😔. #SAvPAK pic.twitter.com/deRF98mkDC
— Khalid (@KhalidMohidin) January 12, 2019
It was Rabada’s turn to join the series of unfortunate events. This time Imam nicked the speedster and De Kock dropped him diving to his left. Two run-out opportunities were missed thereafter in what was a circus of a first session.
Steyn came back on to the field and gave what looked like a powerful speech to the side. Shortly after, Olivier struck twice, dismissing Abbas and Asad Shafiq on 11 and a duck respectively. Steyn followed with an over of his own, dismissing any worries about an injury scare.
Philander struck next, he took out Imam for 43, finding a thick outside edge to Elgar who held out at slip.
Babar Azam (41) turned up the heat by hitting Steyn for three fours in the over before lunch, as Pakistan finished on 111-5.
South Africa 262 – Aiden Markram (90), Theunis de Bruyn (48); Faheem Ashraf (3-57), Mohammad Amir (2-36)
Pakistan 111-5 – Imam-ul-Haq (43), Babar Azam41*; Duanne Olivier (2-20), Vernon Philander (3-25)
Photo: Lee Warren/Gallo Images