Pakistan 106 runs away from series, Zimbabwe need five scalps for Test win
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Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq stood firm as his side lost five wickets chasing victory on the fourth day of the second Test against Zimbabwe at the Harare Sports Club on Friday.
Set 264 to win, Pakistan were 158 for five at the close of play, setting up a tense last day with Zimbabwe having a realistic chance of sharing the series and earning a rare victory against one of cricket's major nations. Misbah was unbeaten on 26 and will resume batting on Saturday with wicketkeeper Adnan Akmal (17 not out), with Pakistan needing another 106 runs to win.
Pakistan made an aggressive start to the chase after bowling out Zimbabwe for 199, breaking a trend of slow scoring on a wearing, cracked pitch. Mohammad Hafeez's first scoring shots — which were to remain his only scoring shots — were all boundaries. But they were forced to become more cautious as the Zimbabwe bowlers struck at regular intervals.
First-change bowler Tendai Chatara made a crucial breakthrough when he dismissed Hafeez and Azhar Ali in quick succession to reduce Pakistan to 46 for two in the 12th over. He had Hafeez caught at mid on by Vitori and bowled Ali for a ten-ball duck.
Opening batsman Manzoor Ahmed stroked his way to his second half-century of the match, hitting 11 fours in an innings of 54 before he was caught at short leg off off-spinner Prosper Utseya. That brought Misbah in to join fellow veteran Younis Khan but Pakistan suffered a huge blow when Younis was bowled for 29, having struck six boundaries in his 47-ball knock, shaping to play left-armer Brian Vitori into the leg side and losing his leg stump.
Misbah might have given a difficult chance when he was on 14, with wicketkeeper Richmond Mutumbami diving far to his right but unable to hold on to a low deflection. But Mutumbami made no mistake when Asad Shafiq tried to cut Utseya and top-edged the ball into the wicketkeeper's gloves. Chatara finished the day with two for 29 from 13 overs, while Utseya had two for 40 from 13 overs.