Zimbabwe have won a dramatic final-over, one-wicket win in the third and final one-day international against New Zealand in Bulawayo.
Zimbabwe’s two big-hitting all-rounders, Elton Chigumbura and Malcolm Waller, finally came good, with a 112-run sixth-wicket partnership to end a 12-match losing streak across formats. Malcolm Waller, who finished on 99 not out, hit a single off the penultimate ball as Zimbabwe chased down a New Zealand’s 5 for 328 which included centuries by Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson.
Not only was it thrilling, but this is now Zimbabwe’s highest successful run chase and ended a sequence of seven successive defeats for the home side.
New Zealand Innings
Earlier on in the day the Black Caps won the toss and decided to bat. They initially got off to a poor start and loosing a few early wickets, but New Zealand captain Taylor (119) and Williamson (100 not out) shared a fifth wicket stand of 195 off only 133 balls.
It turned what seemed likely to be a respectable total into an imposing one, doubling the total by adding 164 runs in the final 15 overs, with the rampage starting in the batting powerplay taken after 35 overs.
Zimbabwe fought back with captain Brendan Taylor, who had already scored centuries in the first two matches, cracking 75 off 65 balls as he and Hamilton Masakadza (36) put on 100 for the second wicket.
Tatenda Taibu also batted well, scoring an aggressive 53 but it was the swashbuckling sixth wicket stand of 112 off 85 balls between Waller and Elton Chigumbura that really put victory within reach for Zimbabwe.
Waller and Chigumbura got the target down to 34 off 36 balls when Chigumbura was bowled by Jacob Oram.
In a nervy finish, three more wickets fell and with four needed off the last over, Waller was dropped twice by Ross Taylor at midwicket.
Two runs were scored off the first miss and one off the second.
Then Ray Price skied a catch and was caught with the scores tied but the batsmen crossed and Waller had the strike and clinched the match.
The New Zealand captain took the blame for dropping Waller by saying “When you drop catches you lose matches,” and he went on to say that “Brendan Taylor and Waller batted very well”.
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