Tahir's figures among worst in test cricket

Last updated 08:17 24/11/2012
Imran Tahir
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CONSOLED: Imran Tahir is given an encouraging pat on the back by his captain Graeme Smith during the second test against Australia.

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South African paceman Vernon Philander couldn't get out of bed for the second test against Australia - his teammate Imran Tahir should have stayed in bed.

While Philander was a pre-game withdrawal with a back injury, Tahir turned in one of the worst bowling performances in test history.

That's not being judgmental, it's statistical.

Tahir finished Australia's first innings at Adelaide Oval with 0-180 from 23 overs - the ninth worst figures in test history.

Tahir conceded an average of 7.82 runs an over - the fourth most expensive runs per over average in test history for a bowler who delivered at least 10 overs.

The Pakistan-born spinner couldn't manage a maiden over in a walloping that drew sympathy from his teammates.

"I feel so sorry for Imran," fast bowler Morne Morkel told reporters after Friday's play.

"He has worked so hard and I think really his big haul is around the corner.

"Luckily in cricket, as we all know, I have been in the boat so many times, there is a second innings as well.

"And the wicket is turning quite nicely and there is a bit of grip now, so I really back Imran to pull out a special performance.

"He's a confident guy, the whole team is behind him."

The press at home in South Africa savaged the leg-spinner, insisting Tahir should never play test cricket again after his first-innings disaster.

The 33-year-old Tahir is highly unlikely to be considered for Perth - both because of conditions and his performance.

This is Tahir's 11th test and he averages a mammoth 47.11.

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