Zim A suffers innings defeat

HARARE - Zimbabwe A went down to South African A by an innings and 81 runs at Bulawayo’s Queens Sports Club yesterday to give the visitors a 1-0 series win after drawing the first unofficial Test match in Harare.

The locals were dismissed for a measly 133 all out inside 56 overs for their second innings after South Africa effected the follow-on.

South A captain Stephen Cook won the toss and elected to bat on day one and led from the front with 143 runs after opening the batting and getting able support from fellow opener Heino Khun (108) and number four Stiian van Zyl unbeaten (133).

Qaasim Adams weighed in with a half century on number five as the visitors went on to declare on 570/6d a few overs before lunch of day two with local spinners Natsai Mushangwe and his captain Tino Mutombodzi taking three and two wickets respectively.

Zimbabwe opener Prince Masvaure batted through the innings on day two to close unbeaten on 104 with the team on 213/3 and trailing by 357 runs.

The left-hander added 42 runs on day three before being bowled out by pace bowler Daunne Olivier for Zimbabwe’s sixth wicket and Craig Ervine’s (59) earlier in the day saw the hosts succumbing to 356 runs all out with a deficit of 214.

Star of the show in Harare with 98 runs in the first innings Brian Chari was notably subdued playing in his home town of Bulawayo managing scores of 16 and 21 in the just-ended match.

The Tuskers batsman said he was now relishing making the Test team to face New Zealand new week in Bulawayo.

“I think I’m going in the right direction I still need to work hard and make sure if I get an opportunity I contribute in a big way for the country,” Chari said.

The ended series was Zimbabwe’s only form of preparations for the longer version of the game ahead of the Black Caps’ visit.

Zimbabwe last played Tests cricket two years ago away in Bangladesh and since then have prioritised the limited overs prompting their temporary removal on the ICC Test rankings owing to have played less number of games.

Former Test opener Tino Mawoyo (79) ended his cricket hiatus with a half century in the second innings of a drawn match at Harare Sports Club starring in an unbroken 177-run second wicket partnership with Masvaure (88) as they pushed hard their quest of making it in the squad for New Zealand.

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