ZIMBABWE 173 for seven off 20 overs (Elton Chigumbura 76, Sean Ervine 39; Mitchell Johnson 4-23).
AUSTRALIA 172 for seven off 20 overs (David Warner 72, Michael Clarke 49; Prosper Utseya 2-27).
Zimbabwe beat Australia after taking two wickets in the final over to seal a one-run win in their warm-up in St Lucia.
Australia were on track chasing Zimbabwe’s 173 for 7 when David Warner smashed 72 off 49 and the captain Michael Clarke took them to the verge of victory with 49 from 42.
Earlier Zimbabwe had opened their bowling attack with spinners Prosper Utseya (2-27 from four overs) and Ray Price (0-33) and used four slow bowlers.
The game ended in high drama before barely a hundred fans who sprang to life in support of the Zimbabweans with Australia needing 13 runs to win from the final over. The task became too difficult when Clarke was bowled from the second-last ball by Chris Mpofu. Mitchell Johnson was then run-out from a wide and Brett Lee could only manage a bye from the final delivery. It was a practice game but it was Australia’s first T20 defeat of the season and it will worry them that they lost so much momentum at the vital stages of the chase.
“Obviously we would have liked to have won,” Johnson said. “When you come into these practice games you want to be pretty close to your best. It won’t be a setback. It’s disappointing to lose in a practice match but we’ve just got to keep going forward.”
Zimbabwe had relied on Elton Chigumbura to lift them after they were 36 for 4 in the sixth over as he hit a crowd-pleasing 76 from just 35 balls including six sixes. Craig Ervine chipped in with a valuable 39 in the stand of 114 that took the side to safety.
Lee made an encouraging comeback from his broken thumb with 1 for 13 off four and Johnson led the figures with 4 for 23. Life was not as rosy for Nathan Hauritz, Daniel Christian and Shane Watson, who all went at 12 or more an over.
The Australians, who left out Shaun Tait and Cameron White, play a Windward Island XI on Thursday in their last chance to fire before their opening match of the tournament against Pakistan on Sunday. Zimbabwe face Sri Lanka on Monday in Guyana before running into New Zealand.
Zimbabwe also beat Australia in the first round of the 2007 World T20 in South Africa, where Australia went on to reach the semi-finals.
Zimbabwe Cricket Books
Amazon, have a bunch of Zim related cricket books, including "Blood, Sweat And Treason" by Henry Olonga, “A History of the Rhodesia and Zimbabwe National Sides” by Jonty Winch who traces the history of cricket in this country (Zimbabwe) from the first recorded game played in 1890, through two World Wars and a guerilla war, to the comparative peace of post-independence and eventual world recognition in the 1980s when Zimbabwe was able to send a side to England to take part in the I.C.C. Trophy competition which it won.
There is also the Autobiography of another great Zimbabwean cricket coach Duncan Fletcher “Behind the Shades”
At the moment Amazon UK don’t have as wide selection as the US site, but I have ordered books from the US and had them delivered to the UK with no problems.
Zimbabwe Cricket on Amazon.co.uk
H MASAKADZA c Christian b Lee 6
V SIBANDA b Nannes 3
B TAYLOR c Haddin b Johnson 15
C COVENTRY c Christian b Johnson 5
E CHIGUMBURA c Smith b Watson 76
C ERVINE c Watson b Johnson 39
T MARUMA c Smith b Johnson 3
C CHIBHABHA not out 5
A CREMER not out 0
Sundries (2b, 6lb, 12w, 1nb)
Fall: 1-11, 2-13, 3-35, 4-36, 5-150, 6-160, 7-171.
Bowling: Nannes 3-0-20-1, Lee 4-1-13-1, Hauritz 2-0-24-0, Johnson 4-0-23-4, Smith 3-0-22-0, Christian 2-0-29-0, Watson 2-0-34-1.
S WATSON c Chigumbura, b Utseya 2
D WARNER c& b Utseya 72
M CLARKE b Mpofu 49
D HUSSEY c Chibhabha b Utseya 16
B HADDIN run out 13
S SMITH run out 0
D CHRISTIAN not out 4
M JOHNSON run out 0
B LEE not out 0
Sundries (11lb 5w) 16
Fall: 1-17, 2-95, 3-130, 4-155, 5-156, 6-170, 7-171
Bowling: Utseya 4-0-27-2, Price 4-0-33-0, Chigumbura 4-0-40-0, Cremer 4-0-30-1, Maruma 2-0-18-0, Mpofu 2-1-13-1.
Result: Zimbabwe won by one run.