It's the same old story

HARRE - It was the same old script as Zimbabwe once again put in a disjointed performance losing the first Twenty20 match against India by 54 runs yesterday.

After succumbing to a 3-0 series defeat in the One Day International series which ended on Tuesday, it was always going to be very difficult to expect the hosts to turn the tables in the shorter version.

The majority of the players in the visiting second string Indian side have made their careers in the hugely popular Indian Premier League.

But Twenty20 cricket being anybody’s game and the fact the locals were best suited in their own conditions provided a glimmer of hope.

A change in format ensured also that for the first time the visitors won the toss although the result went the same way.

Indian Captain Rajinkya Rahane decided to bat first; something they have become accustomed to in the ODI series.

The visitors’ openers Rahane (33) and Murali Vijay (34) together with number three batsman Robin Uthappa (39) laid down a good foundation for a competitive score of 178-5 after 20 overs.

Just like during the ODI series, India were got a lot of help from the Zimbabwe bowlers who gave away 25 extras.

After restricting the tourists to 82-2 in the 10th over, the Zimbabwean bowlers also went on to concede 96 runs in the remaining overs.

Zimbabwe’s chase looked to be going according to plan when openers Hamilton Masakadza (28) and Chamu Chibhabha (23) combined for a first wicket partnership of 55 runs. 

But when Chibhabha and Masakadza perished in consecutive overs it was all downhill from there as the Indian spinners Harbhajan Singh and Axar Patel tightened the noose.

In the end, the hosts reached 124-5 after 20 overs some 54 runs short of the Indian total.

Zimbabwe captain Elton Chigumbura said: “We were outclassed all around today; it’s very disappointing. I thought we gave them 10 to 15 runs too many and also in the second innings, the wicket got dryer and became too-paced. As a result it became difficult to try and play some strokes.”

Indian Captain, Rahane was all smiles again after the match.

“I think first of all we batted very well. Between 160 and 170 would be a good total and as I said at the toss, our spinners came handy.

“No initial movement so slightly easier to bat in the first innings. The way we batted in the middle overs, taking singles and twos, that was crucial on a big ground,” he said.

The second match is on tomorrow at the same venue and the Indians will now be looking at sealing a total whitewash by winning this Twenty20 series 2-0.

Comments (1)

zimbabwe have raw talents aplenty,if bangladesh can beat india,south africa&pakistan why they should lag behind.they need steely will ,determination & a burning desire to succeed.

MAINAK BANERJEE - 18 July 2015

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