By Lawrence Trusida, Sports Editor
The Zimbabwe National Cricket side has been reminded that there is a long way to go before the Chevrons can compete with the best in World after a humbling 10 wicket defeat by visiting India in the first of three one day international matches at Harare Sports Club this Thursday.
The first ball of each team’s innings clearly highlighted how the Chevrons and India approached the match.
There were looseners at both ends but the results were totally different.
Innocent Kaia got a full toss first ball but instead of giving it the punishment it deserved the inexperienced opener decided to block.
Fast forward to the Indian batting innings Shikhar Dhawan was given a loosener by Richard Ngarava and he duly dispatched the ball for four.
The Chevrons were tentative in the approach, yet India was bullish as usual and the result was a 10 wicket loss for the home side.
“I wouldn’t say we were tentative, I think we played each ball on merit. Cricket is still cricket and a bad ball is still bad ball and I think we prepared well and approached the game confidently, but the Indians were better,” Ngarava said.
Deepak Chahar’s probing new-ball spell on his impressive return after six months followed by a century stand between in-form openers Shikhar Dhawan and Shubman Gill hurtled Zimbabwe to their 13th straight ODI loss to India.
India’s pace bowlers utilised the early moisture and swing to trouble Zimbabwe’s top order, which had hardly scored against Bangladesh.
The Indian bowlers reduced Zimbabwe to 31 for 4 and then 110 for 8 before a counter-attacking ninth-wicket stand of 70 off 65 balls between Brad Evans and Richard Ngarava lifted them to a somewhat respectable total
Again, Zimbabwe’s top order failed to put some runs on the board and they will be hoping to do much better when they square off with India in the second ODI on Saturday at the same venue.