Is Zim suffering from lack of confidence?

HARARE - It was another nail-biting encounter in Sylhet yesterday as Zimbabwe squeaked home by five wickets when Vusi Sibanda smashed the ball over long on for six to keep Zimbabwe's World Twenty20 hopes alive against a Netherlands team that only have two Dutchmen playing for them.

Before we talk about the quick fixes of world cricket, we do however have to have a look at our own team and ask why we don't have the killer instinct, and the ability to finish a team off? Or in simple laymen terms, kick them when they're down!

Zimbabwe got off to an almost perfect start when they reduced the Netherlands to a shaky 38-4, before the Australian-born Cooper brothers went about resurrecting the innings.

Tom Cooper, who seems like a more than decent player, could count himself very lucky when he was given not out on nine, when replays suggest that he should have been out leg before wicket.

Be that as it may, you can't deny the all-rounder’s talent, as he took full advantage of the umpires mistake, and went on to smash an unbeaten 72 off 58 balls.

This counter attack allowed the Netherlands to post a competitive total on the board.

From the onset, one couldn't help but feel that Zimbabwe were going to make very heavy work of chasing down this total, and that was exactly what they did.

The question in this particular article is:  Is there any communication between the batsmen and coaching staff?

Do the players have a clear understanding of what they have to do in order to qualify for the next round?

Are all of these permutations discussed before a match, and during the change of innings?

As an outsider looking in, it would appear that either there was no communication between the batsmen and coaching staff, or the batsmen simply don't believe in their own ability.

In the first game, Paul Stirling was ruthless as he tore into the Zimbabwean bowling, which provided the platform for the rest of the batsmen to finish the job, even though it went down to the very last ball.

Then we witnessed a fantastic counter attack by Tom Cooper as he played his natural game and very nearly sent Zimbabwe packing.

Although Zimbabwe snuck across the line, both Hamilton Masakadza and Brendan Taylor seemed to be batting with exaggerated caution.

This could possibly be due to a lack of confidence that seems to be running throughout the team, and it will be interesting to see how coach Andrew Waller will get the team to play fearless cricket again.

Prosper Utseya was tidy enough, while Tendai Chatara continues to take rapid strides in becoming Zimbabwe's premier seam bowler, now that Kyle Jarvis has left the country.

Chatara is a misleading character in the sense that he comes across as a laid-back person who does whatever he needs to do at his own time.

But underneath that laid-back and almost carefree attitude, there is a very shrewd and astute cricketing brain.

Chatara puts a lot of thought into each and every delivery he bowls, which can only put him in good stead.

Vusi Sibanda seemed cool, calm and collective throughout the day, starting with a brilliant bit of fielding at point, which he stopped with a look of nonchalance, to the calmness he displayed when he finished the match off with the towering six.

Zimbabwe will have to count on the Netherlands beating Ireland, as well as themselves getting it together, and comprehensively beating the UAE tomorrow, should they have any hopes of qualifying for the next round.

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