Brandon Moyo, Sports Reporter
ZIMBABWE missed out on a great opportunity to book their place in the Super 12 of the International Cricket Council Men’s T20 World Cup after losing their second encounter against West Indies by 31 runs at the Bellerive Oval in Hobart, Australia yesterday.
After being asked to bowl first, Zimbabwe’s bowlers led by off spinner Sikandar Raza were brilliant which saw them restricting the Windies to 153-7 in 20 overs. The Chevrons started well with the bat within the first three overs but however collapsed to be wiped out for 122 runs in 18.2 overs.
The defeat left the group wide open where all the four teams have the chance of making the next round of the tournament.
It took the Chevrons 3.3 overs to get the first breakthrough off the bowling of Blessing Muzarabani, getting Kyle Mayers caught behind. The lanky Muzarabani went on to finish with two wickets for 38 runs in his four overs.
The Chevrons managed to slow down the Windies’ scoring in the middle overs with the spinners keeping things tight. Spinners took four of the seven wickets that fell for West Indies with Raza picking up 3/19 in four overs. Raza did not concede any boundary.
With a required run rate of eight runs per over, the Chevrons started their chase on high, scoring above the required rate with captain Regis Chakabva and Wesley Madhevere putting out a first wicket partnership of 29 runs in just 2. 2 overs.
Zimbabwe looked on course for a comfortable victory before wickets started tumbling with the Windies seamers doing the damage. Tony Munyonga, who replaced Craig Ervine was bowled two runs by Alzarri Joseph while Williams was taken behind for just one run off the bowling of Obed McCoy. In-form Raza was caught for 14 runs while attempting to hit a second consecutive six.
A fighting 29 runs off 22 balls from Luke Jongwe was not enough to guide the Chevrons through the finish line. Ryan Burl chipped in with 17 runs as the team collapsed with the bat. Opening batsman Madhevere was the second highest run getter with 27 runs on the board.
Fast bowler Joseph produced the best bowling performance of the T20 World Cup so far, finishing with figures of 4/16 in four overs to be voted Player of the Match. Joseph was supported by former captain, Jason Holder who finished with 3/12 in 3.2 overs.
Earlier, Ireland proved too strong for Scotland after a six wickets win courtesy of a Curtis Campher 72 runs off 32 balls which helped the Irish easily chase down a target of 177.
Both Ireland and West Indies’ wins leave the group wide open with everything to play for in the final round of fixtures tomorrow. Zimbabwe, who face Scotland in their last match are second with a better net run rate to that of West Indies and Ireland.
The Dave Houghton coached Zimbabwe need nothing but a win tomorrow to make it to the next stage of the tournament. – @brandon_malvi
Article Source: The Chronicle