Zimbabwe XI v Australia A
Match Update – 50-75 Over’s
Australia A has set a target of 234. It is competitive total but one that can be chased if Zimbabwe players bat wisely.
It was a positive start from the Zimbabwe openers as Captain Brendan Taylor started off with a boundary. He was well supported by Vusi Sibanda where they weathered some early pressure. At the end of the first three over’s they were 12 without loss.
Mitchell Starch and Luke ButterWorth opened the bowling for the Australian A side. Both had failed to give their side an early break through as Brendan Taylor who was recently appointed the Zimbabwe captain showed his intend by hitting Butterworth for a
boundary. He was joined by Sibanda who scores off Starc to bring up his first boundary.
After seven over’s Zimbabwe moved to 31 having all their wickets intact.
The first wicket fell as captain Brendan Taylor was dismissed by a well taken caught and bowled chance by Butterworth. Zimbabwe were 32- 1. It was a blow as their captain departed after making a promising 17 that included 3 boundaries.
Next man in for Zimbabwe was Hamilton Masakadza. The runs had dried a little as Australian bowler’s started finding their rhythm. At the end of the first ten over’s Zimbabwe were 37 for the loss of one wicket.
The run rate had dropped below 4 per over as the required rate went above 5.
John Hastings, the Australian medium pacer was introduced into the attack. A good first over where he conceded just one run. Mitchell Marsh, another young promising medium pacer, started from the other end. He conceded four in his first over.
Sibanda then took two boundaries of Marsh too move along to 27. At the end of 15 over’s Zimbabwe moved on to 58 with the loss of 1 wicket.
After a slow start, Masakadza joined the action by hitting two fours in as many over’s. He moved on to 16 and Zimbabwe onto 66 at the end of the 16th over. The required rate was now below 5. Australia was in need of some quick wickets.
Steven O’Keefe, the slow left arm bowler was introduced into the attack. He went for nine in his first over. On the other end John Hasting is bowled steady as he gave just eleven from his 5 over’s.
It’s was then Sibanda’s turn to hit Keefe for a boundary. There were worrying times for the Australian side as Zimbabwe moved onto 87 for 1 in 20 over needing another 146 runs with nine wickets remaining.
Nathan Lyon, right arm spinner, replaced Hastings and bowled a good first over where he conceded a single run. Both batsmen now moved in their thirties and looked well settle.
Nathan Lyon striked in his second over where he removed the well settled Sibanda who made 37. It was a caught and bowled chance that Lyon duly obliged. It was a much needed breakthrough provided by the off spinner.
The new batsman came into bat was Regis Chakabva. However his stay was not for long as he was bowled by Lyon who now had two wickets too his name.
At the end of 25 overs Zimbabwe were 96-3.