Poor start for Zim

HARARE - Zimbabwe got off their ODI series against Pakistan to a worst possible start after losing by 131 runs as the home side’s batsmen were suffocated by leg-spinner Yasir Shah here yesterday.

After winning the toss, Zimbabwe captain Elton Chigumbura elected to field first on the slow Harare Sports Club wicket.

The visitors were able to post a competitive 259-6 after 50 overs largely due to a sixth wicket partners worth 124 runs between Imad Wasim and Mohammad Rizwan.

Zimbabwe’s chase never really got going as the locals where asphyxiated by Pakistan bowlers, who never gave an inch.

Shah finished the match with a career-best figures of 6-26 from his nine overs.

His previous best was a 4-29 against Sri Lanka in Colombo last July.

The 29-year-old, who made his ODI debut here in 2011, has now achieved the best bowling figures in Harare by a leg-spinner in history. 

Although the Zimbabwean top order all got good starts they were unable to turn them into huge scores.

Opener Chamu Chibhabha was on 12 when he was trapped lbw by left-armer Imad Wasim in the ninth over.

Debutant Brian Chari did well to fend off the vicious deliveries from Pakistan seamer Mohammad Irfan early on.

But the Matabeleland Tuskers opener would become Shah’s first victim in the 14th over when he was dismissed for 16.

Hamilton Masakadza was out next when he was bowled by Shah in the 18th over after scoring 15.

Sean Williams offered some resistance with 26 from 31 deliveries before he was bowled out by Shoaib Malik.

The only other Zimbabwean batsmen able to reach double figures were Chigumbura (22) and Sikandar Raza (19)

Earlier in the morning, Zimbabwe’s bowlers had started well but allowed Pakistan to reach a total of 259-6 after 50 overs after some loose bowling at the death.

Spinner John Nyumbu had done well to redeem himself by running out the dangerous tourists’ captain Azhar Ali (11) in the sixth over.

Nyumbu was making up for his earlier mistake when he dropped Ali, who was still yet to get off the mark, at second slip.

There was early promise in the way the Zimbabwean attack had the Pakistan batsmen on the back foot in those opening overs.

The visitors soon slipped to 35-3 inside the opening 10 overs following the dismissals of Ahmed Shehzad (12) and Mohammad Hafeez (10) 

However, as the Pakistan innings progressed, Zimbabwean fielders began to drop catches in the field allowing the tourists to regroup and build their innings.

A fourth wicket partnership between Shoaib Malik (31) and Sarfraz Ahmed (44) worth 65 runs turned the game into Pakistan’s favour.

Mohammad Rizwan went on to top score for Pakistan with an unbeaten 75 after he starred in a sixth wicket partnership with Imad Wasim (61) worth 124 runs.

Tinashe Panyangara, Graeme Cremer, Luke Jongwe and John Nyumbu picked up a wicket each as the Zimbabwean bowlers toiled on the slow and low wicket at Harare Sports Club.

Speaking after the match, Chari said the Zimbabwe batsmen need to use their feet more inside the crease if they are to have any chance to cope with Shah’s bowling.

There was no foot work whatsoever from the locals batsmen whenever Shah was bowling and in the end it proved futile.

Post a comment

Readers are kindly requested to refrain from using abusive, vulgar, racist, tribalistic, sexist, discriminatory and hurtful language when posting their comments on the Daily News website.
Those who transgress this civilised etiquette will be barred from contributing to our online discussions.
- Editor

Your email address will not be shared.