100 match milestone for BRM Taylor as Zimbabwe lose to Warriors

Posted by brmtaylor.com on February 11, 2008

Zimbabwe were defeated by 6 wickets by the Warriors in the first MTN Championship match at Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo, but there is no cause for concern yet - we must remember that Sri Lanka lost a 50 over match to Tasmania several weeks ago by a larger margin.

Batting first, the Sibanda/Masakadza opening partnership failed to deliver. It wasn't until Sean Williams and Tatenda Taibu added 45 together that the score started to look respectable. Williams was adjudged LBW on 26, while Taibu was caught soon after scoring his 15th one-day fifty.

Brendan Taylor played his 100th List A match since making his debut in 2003. The other experienced players in the team are Taibu (146 matches), Gary Brent, Ray Price (120 each), Vusi Sibanda (109) and Elton Chigumbura (102). Taylor scored 32 and put on 52 runs with Taibu, the teams best partnership.

Keen to try some newer players (which perhaps isn't the best idea, considering Zimbabwe don't want to lose any more of these matches), Graeme Cremer was recalled while Taurai Muzarabani and Regis Chakabva made their debut in Zimbabwe colours after impressing in the Zimbabwe Provinces team. Both performed reasonably well, without doing any major damage to the opposition. Chakabva's 17 from 10 balls (with 3 fours) raises some eyebrows though, perhaps he is keen to cement a spot in the ODI team as someone who can bat at 6 or 7 and score quickly.

The racial quota system appears to have been abolished, at least for the time being. Five white players (Sean Williams, Brendan Taylor, Graeme Cremer, Gary Brent and Ray Price) were included for the match, when in recent times a 3-8 split was favoured.

Cremer was expensive, conceding 8 runs an over when bowling, although he did take the wicket of Hylton Ackerman. Ray Price was as classy as ever, conceding only 3 and over and taking 1/27. Gary Brent was just as miserly, taking 0/28 from 8 overs. Muzarabani took 0/32 from 8 oers, while Chigumbura was costly too, taking 1/51 from 8.5 overs. Arno Jacobs did the damage with the bat for Warriors, smashing 68.

Zimbabwe eventually lost the match by 6 wickets.

The playing eleven was: Vusi Sibanda, Hamilton Masakadza (capt), Sean Williams, Tatenda Taibu (wk), Brendan Taylor, Elton Chigumbura, Regis Chakabva, Graeme Cremer, Gary Brent, Ray Price, Taurai Muzarabani.

Chamu Chibhabha and Keith Dabengwa were the omitted batsman, while Chris Mpofu was the absentee of the bowlers. It was a relief to finally see 5 bowlers playing, and with Cremer (who is a Test specialist, remember) the only bowler going for a overly high economy rate, there is promise for the future. Muzarabani will most likely keep his spot for the next match after an impressive performance, and there is no reason why Chakabva will be dropped. Should Utseya be available for selection, he will replace Graeme Cremer.

Brendan Taylor could return as opener due to Masakadza's slow scoring rate.

Likely Zimbabwe XI against the Titans at Benoni: unchanged.