Zimbabwe Provinces embarassed by North West

Posted by brmtaylor.com admin on February 17, 2008

Due to a sporting declaration by North West in the 3-day match, Zimbabwe Provinces almost pulled off an amazing victory thanks to a 20 ball half century from captain Stuart Matsikenyeri. However, they ran out of time and had to settle for a draw - which was the most likely result from day 1 after rain interfered. The one day match was not so exciting.

Batting first, the country districts got off to an awful start, losing Matsikenyeri for 5. With Mawayo batting down the order, and Matsikenyeri and Friday Kasteni opening, the top order is exposed (Tino Mawoyo is the only specialist opener in the team). Kasteni went for 15. A strange captaincy move saw Timycen Maruma, who is a fine First Class batsman but apparently a bunny in the one-day format, bat at number 4 and depart several balls later for a duck.

The middle order stuck around, with Mawoyo adding 31. Bonaparte Mujuru added 42 from 90 balls, while Prosper Tsvanhu, a promising left arm quick, added a quickfire 35 from 44 to remain unbeaten. Ed Rainsford was stuck on 4 not out, as the provinces finished with 9/182 from 45 overs.

North West got off to a great start, with Christiaan Jonker smashing 57 from 40 balls before holing out to Friday Kasteni off the bowling of Chamu Chibhabha, who took 1/22 from his 2 overs. All of the bowlers were expensive, but Ed Rainsford managed to bowl well at the beginning of the innings, including a maiden and several fine overs. Spinners Tafadzwa Kamungozi and Timycen Maruma managed to maintain an economy rate of under 5 an over.

North West ended with 1/183 with over 17 overs to spare, Johan Mostert unbeaten on 89. In all, it was a disappointing week for Zimbabwe Provinces, and they have been well and truly exposed without their leading players Regis Chakabva, Graeme Cremer and even Blessing Mahwire and Taurai Muzarabani who were not playing today.