Zimbabwe had a point to prove today and they did it in style! They played well chasing a very-much competitive score of 285 set by UAE.
On the back of Shaiman Anwar’s and Khurram Khan’s superlative innings, UAE notched up a competitive score on the board. Zimbabwe’s bowlers, Tendai Chatara and Tinashe Panyangara started on a good note by bowling with good disciplines. However, Brendan Taylor, the wicket-keeper, dropped an easy chance to give Andri Berenger a reprieve off Chatara’s bowling. Chatara again produced the edge off Berenger’s bat but this time Taylor made no mistake and completed the catch. Unfortunately, it turned out to be a no-ball.
He was eventually rewarded for his perseverance with the wicket of Amjad Ali. Khurram then, picked the length quickly and essayed fluent shots on both sides of the wicket to give UAE’s innings the much-needed impetus. It took a smart catch by Sean Williams at backward point to send the dangerous Khurram back to the pavilion.
Once Khurram was dismissed, the 35-year-old Anwar, known for his ability to play powerful shots in UAE’s cricketing circles, gave a good account of himself with a crunching knock of 67. In particular, he took a heavy toll on Panyangara’s bowling by clobbering him for a four and a six in the 40th over of the innings. Anwar was well-supported by Swapnil Patel. Krishnachandran Karate, Amjad Javed and Mohammad Naveed too played key knocks for UAE. For Zimbabwe, Chatara bowled a fine spell upfront. Solomon Mire, with a whippy action, hit the bat hard and troubled the batsmen. But their fielding wasn’t up to the mark.
With the ball too, Naveed and Javed started on a good note. In particular, Naveed generated away-swing and by flicking his wrist, surprised Zimbabwe’s batsmen for a bit of pace. It was Sikandar Raza, who initially looked to take on UAE’s bowlers. However, once he was dismissed, Zimbabwe lost a slew of wickets. Regis Chakabva playing out a lot of dot deliveries didn’t help their cause either. To make it worse for them, Taylor was given out LBW. Taylor took a review, but the Hawk-Eye suggested that it was going on to hit the leg-stump.
Ervine and Williams though, with their sterling efforts eventually helped Zimbabwe win by 4 wickets.
Zimbabwe will play their next match against the West Indies in Canberra. On the other hand, UAE will take on Ireland in Brisbane.
UAE 285/7 in 50 overs
Zimbabwe 286/6 in 48 overs