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Taurai Mangwiro, Monomotapa coach

THE Zimbabwe National Cricket Team failed to qualify for the semi-finals of the ongoing International Cricket Council World Cup but they finished their campaign in style after they dismissed Kenya by a massive 161 runs at Eden Gardens in Kolkata yesterday

Elton Chigumbura won the toss and elected to bat first and this proved to be a good decision by the Zimbabwean skipper as they managed to set a 308 run target for the Kenyans on what appeared to be a bating-friendly pitch.

Zimbabwe lost their opening batsmen Brendan Taylor (26) and Regis Chakabva (9) within ten overs of play but two solid partnerships, one from Tatenda Taibu and Vusi Sibanda (110-117) and the other between Chigumbura and man-of-the-match Craig Ervine (105-85) were enough to carry the day for the Allan Butcher-coached side.

Ervine was the matches’ top scorer with 66 runs from 54 deliveries followed by Sibanda with 61 from 57 balls and Taibu was third with 53 off 74 balls.

Chigumbura was also in fine form with the bat but he was caught out on the last ball of the batting power play by Tanmay Mishra off a Peter Ongondo delivery after contributing 38 runs to the scoreboard.

At the close of the innings, Greg Lamb struck 1 four and a 6 from 10 balls to finish off with 17 runs not out.

As if not to be out done, Prosper Utseya also hit 3 fours and a six from just six balls to leave his score at 19 runs not out and this left the Kenyans with a big mountain to climb in order to surpass the 309 run target set by the Zimbabweans.

Ray Price, Graeme Cremer and Chris Mpofu did not bat in the innings.

On the bowling front, Utseya, Lamb, Price, Cremer and Mpofu were superb as their tight bowling restricted Kenya to 147 runs all out with 14 overs to spare.

Price, Cremer and Lamb claimed two wickets apiece while Utseya and Mpofu had one each.

Kenya’s Nehemiah Odhiambo who was accurate with both the ball and the bat was not out with 44 runs off 47 balls followed by Rakep Patel (24), Alex Obanda (23), Thomas Odoyo (14), Steve Tikolo (10), James Ngoche (9), Peter Ongondo (6), Elija Otieno (5), Tanmay Mishra (4), Collins Obuya (1) and David Obuya (0).

The win meant that Zimbabwe remained on 5th position on Group A log standings with 4 points from 6 matches.

Meanwhile, Zimbabwe’s homework lies on improving their bating as they prepare for their return to Test Cricket.

Terrance Ndawana


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