Matabeleland Tuskers ensured their place in the Logan Cup final with a comprehensive win over Midwest Rhino in the second of this week's Logan Cup matches. With some impressive batting performances powering them on, Tuskers posted 393/8d and 335/3d in their innings, with Paul Horton and Gavin Ewing both scoring 119 in the second. For Rhinos, Riki Wessels saved their blushes in the first innings, scoring a huge 146 before Rhinos were bowled out for 298, but they were left chasing 431 in the second innings, or having to bat out 4 sessions to secure the draw that would have been good enough to get them to the final - but that proved too much of a challenge as they were bowled out for 253 to give Tuskers a comfortable 177-run win. Full scorecard below the cut.
Tuskers 393/8d (96.3 overs; Trenchard 84, Nicolson 3/121) & 335/3d (54.5 overs; Horton 119, Ewing 119, Mugava 2/42), Rhinos 298 (88.4 overs; Wessels 146, Meth 3/44) & 253 (67.1 overs; Benade 64, Mboyi 3/47). Matabeleland Tuskers win by 177 runs.
Mountaineers completed the group stage of their Logan Cup campaign with another thumping win, this time a 9-wicket victory over the winless Southern Rocks. Tendai Chatara starred for Mountaineers, taking 11 wickets in the match and conceeding just 49 runs in 38 overs bowled to return figures of 6/33 and 5/16; Rocks could only manage 177 & 94 in their innings. Their second-innings total was enough to make Mountaineers bat again, but they needed less than 11 overs in their second innings to claim the full seven points - although it must be said that their first innings was dominated by three good knocks (Tino Mawoyo's 62, Timycen Maruma's 54 and Bernard Mlambo's 40) while the rest of the side failed miserably. Mountaineers will no doubt be glad to have some experience back in the side some the final.
Rocks finish bottom of the heap, while Mountaineers now go on to meet Tuskers in the final. Full scorecard below the cut.
Rocks 177 (66 overs; Mutumbami 67, Chatara 6/33) & 94 (37.5 overs; Sikandar Raza 25, Chatara 5/16), Mountaineers 218 (68.4 overs; Mawoyo 62, Vitori 6/55) & 56/1 (10.3 overs; H Masakadza 29*, Mahwire 1/32). Mountaineers win by 9 wickets.
The other Logan Cup match of the round, Mashonaland Eagles v Matabeleland Tuskers, was a heavily rain-affected affair that drew to a close after the completion of the first innings. Tuskers chose to field after winning the toss, and held Eagles to 131, with Dean Mazhawidza's 78 being the only thing that stood between the side and even greater humilation. Keegan Meth had an outstanding spell with the ball, taking seven wickets for 42. As an indication of how much the weather had affected the match, it took Eagles until the morning of day four to complete their innings, which was just over 60 overs long.
Tuskers lasted a similar amount of time, but managed to post 188 and at least secure the point for a first-innings lead. Unlike Eagles, there was no stand-out innings, with Adam Wheater's 33 being the best of an otherwise forgettable innings. Chad Keegan took 4/43, with Andrew Hall chipping in with 2/36. With no chance of either side completing a second innings in the remaining time, that was all she wrote.
Full scorecard below the cut. The result leaves Tuskers in third in the tourney table, behind Rhinos - who they'll now meet in the final round, starting Friday, in a match that will decide who goes on to meet Mountaineers in the Logan Cup final. Tuskers must win that match to go through, while for Rhinos a draw will do.
Eagles 131 (60.2 overs; Mazhawidza 78, Meth 7/42), Tuskers 188 59.3 overs; Wheater 33, Keegan 4/43). Match drawn.
After beating Eagles by an innings in the last round, it was Rhinos' turn to get thumped by a similar margin this week as Mountaineers ran rampage over them in this week. Mountaineers were put in to bat first by Rhinos, and went on to set a first-innings total of 245 - a poor score by most measures. Gary Chirtimuta led the way with 105, while Justin Lewis produced another good spell with the ball to take 6/52 and keep Mountaineers in check.
That was the theory, anyway. But Rhinos followed their decent work with the ball with two thoroughly dismal innings with the bat, posting 61 & 88. For Mountaineers, both Donald Tiripano and Tendai Chatara too five'fers - one in each innings - while Rhinos managed a top score of just 23 (Neville Madziva in the first innings). A match best forgotten for Rhinos, then, and a result that guarantees Mountaineers their place in the Logan Cup final.
Full scorecard below the cut. Rhinos go on to meet Tuskers in the final round which, depending on the result on the ongoing Tuskers / Eagles match, could be a winner-takes-all playoff for the second final spot - in which case Rhinos will be hoping for a sudden and dramatic improvement in form.
Mountaineers 245 (85.1 overs; Chirimuta 105, Lewis 6/52), Rhinos 61 (27.2 overs; Madziva 23, Tiripano 5/26) & 88 (f/o; 40.3 overs; Mugava 20, Chatara 5/35). Mountaineers win by an innings and 96 runs.
A few big knocks, a lot of poor ones, and a tame draw of a result in Bulawayo - that's what the second of this week's Logan Cup matches served up, and with Tuskers needing a win to keep hold of second place in the tournament table, that wasn't the result they were looking for. Southern Rocks posted 261 to open the match, led by Chamu Chibhabha's 105 - he was ably supported by Richmond Mutumbami (54) and Stuart Matsikenyeri (47), but if you total them up you'll see that there wasn't muuch of a contriubtion from the rest of the team. Tuskers' bowlers spread the wickets around, with Njabulo Ncube, Keegan Meth and Tawanda Mupariwa each taking three apiece. In reply, Adam Wheater's 126 formed the basis of Tuskers' innings as they worked their way to 365, with captain Gavin Ewing scoring 80 as Tuskers secured the first-innings point. Blessing Mahwire took 4/54.
Time ran out on Rocks' second innings, though - it had gotten off to a good start, with Roy Kaia scoring 112 and Chamu Chibhabha falling just short of a ton of his own with 91, but the match was declared a draw with Rocks on 292/4, leaving Sikandar Raza unbeaten on 41*. And that was all she wrote. Tuskers move down into third after this round's matches, overtaken by Rhinos after their thumping defeat of Eagles, while Rocks remain rooted to the bottom and without a win in the series yet. Full scorecard below the cut.
Rocks 261 (103 overs; Chibhabha 105, Mupariwa 3/35) & 292/4 (111 overs; Kaia 112, Meth 2/52), Tuskers 365 (129.1 overs; Wheater 126, Mahwire 4/54). Match drawn.
Eagles were trounced by an innings and 70 runs in the first of this week's Logan Cup matches. After collapsing to a paltry 97 all-out on the opening day, with Simbarashe Gupo's 24 being the best of a woeful outing. Ian Nicolson (4/33) and Neville Madziva (3/10) did the bulk of the damage between them, leaving Eagles struggling before they even began.
Rhinos' good form continued with the bat, too, as they posted 365 before declaring with a wicket still in hand, with opener Gary Ballance scoring 120 along with some useful contributions coming from Malcolm Waller (91) and Vusi Sibanda (46). Chad Keegan (4/72) did have some success with the ball for the home side, but with Rhinos taking a 268-run lead into the second innings.
And, as it happened, that was enough of a lead for them not to need to bat again. Eagles did better the second time around, but that 268 turned out to be too much of a mountain for them to climb, posting 198. Douglas Hondo's unbeaten 60* at the bottom of the order showed there was at least some fight in there, but not enough. The result puts Rhinos into second place in the table (pending the result of the ongoing Tuskers v Rocks match), and leaves Eagles still without a win in a season that, outside of the Twenty20 competition, has been truly woeful. Full scorecard below the cut.
Eagles 97 (72.1 overs; Gupo 24, Nicolson 4/33) & 198 (60 overs; Hondo 60*, Mugava 3/72), Rhinos 365/9d (91.3 overs; Ballance 120, Keegan 4/72). Midwest Rhinos win by an innings and 70 runs.
A dramatic batting collapse on the final day saw Mashonaland Eagles slide to a 284-run defeat at the hands of Mountaineers yesterday. Set a target of 374 - unlikely in the first place - Eagles lost their first wicket with the score on just 11, and the procession of batsmen continued from there as Natsai Mushangwe (5/21) and Donald Tiripano (3/34) demolished the Eagles lineup.
Earlier, Mountaineers had set a competitive first-innings total of 354, scored largely by Bernard Mlambo (141) and Timycen Maruma (56). While the rest of thier lineup struggled to make headway against the Eagles bowlers, led by Chad Keegan's 3/76), that proved enough to secure them the first-innings point as Eagles were in turned bowled out for 229, despite 50s by Cephas Zhuwawo and Andrew Hall. In their second innings, Mountaineers seemed in terminal early trouble as they slumped to 23/4, but the partnership of Hamilton Masakadza (unbeaten on 120) and Gary Chirimuta (66) rescued the innings and, with the score on 248/6, the home side felt secure enough to declare. Their confidence was well-founded, as Eagles proceeded to fall apart, handing Mountaineers an impressive victory and seeing them extend their lead at the top of the Logan Cup table. Eagles, meanwhile, continue their winless run in the competition and continue to languish in 4th, ahead of Southern Rocks. Full scorecard below the cut.
Mountaineers 354 (94.2 overs; Mlambo 141, Keegan 3/76) & 248/5d (70 overs; H Masakadza 120*, Keegan 3/30), Eagles 229 (72.4 overs; Hall 56, Tiripano 3/23) & 89 (41.4 overs; Mutizwa 22, Mushangwe 5/21). Mountaineers win by284 runs.
The balance of this match had swung from one side to the other during the first three days, and it swung almost to the end. There was never any chance of Southern Rocks winning on the final day, but from looking dead and buried at lunch, superb defensive batting from Stuart Matsikenyeri and Robertson Chinyengetere took them to a position at tea when they looked likely to force a draw. But in the final session Mid-West Rhinos broke through again and the collapse of the last four wickets gave them victory by 98 runs. The young off-spinner Simon Mugava played a leading part with four good wickets and a run-out.
At the start of the day, Southern Rocks looked to be in a virtually hopeless position, with two wickets down for just 28 runs in search of a highly unlikely target of 309, and a rather awkward pitch to do it on. The situation immediately worsened when the overnight batsman Roy Kaia (10) edged the first ball he faced of the day into the hands of second slip; now 28 for three. In the event the pitch, although cracked and with balls keeping low at times, did not otherwise help the bowlers unduly and was not too difficult for a batsman concentrating on staying in rather than forcing the pace.
This Matsikenyeri was determined to do. He put his head down and took no risks, apart from one unwise attempted sweep that nearly had him lbw, and for a while he found a good partner in Sikandar Raza. They batted for almost an hour together until Raza was given out caught at short leg – another batsman departing most unhappy with the decision. When Richmond Mutumbami had an unwise swing at a ball from Simon Mugava and was bowled, the score was 76 for five and it seemed just one more incident in Southern Rocks’ seemingly inevitable slide towards defeat. At lunch the score was 94 for five, with Matsikenyeri on 35.
His new partner was Chinyengetere, who also put his head down, and for the entire afternoon this pair resisted everything the Mid-West Rhinos bowlers could send them. The bowling and fielding were generally good, but the batsmen would not be shifted. Matsikenyeri reached his fifty after more than three hours at the crease, and by tea the score had progressed to 162 for five. This was another session that changed the course of the match: at the start of it, Rhinos had seemed certain to win, while by the break Rocks were favourites to secure an unexpected draw.
In the final session the second new ball was taken, and this was make or break for Rhinos. Surprisingly Vusi Sibanda replaced Ian Nicolson with Roly Benade after two overs, but the move proved inspired, for Chinyengetere miscued a drive and was caught low down in the covers. His 47 had taken three hours and came off 157 balls; he well deserved a fifty. The pair had added 105 for the sixth wicket in those three hours.
Mid-West Rhinos went on the attack again with renewed hope, and Blessing Mahwire was run out by Mugava in a moment of confusion. Tafadzwa Kamungozi was next to go, caught at slip off the returning Nicolson, and finally Matsikenyeri’s long vigil came to an end. Just as Rhinos had put the fielders back to keep him away from the strike rather than get him out, he stepped in front of a straight ball from Mugava and was trapped lbw for 93. He batted more than five hours and faced 242 balls.
The last pair hung on as best they could, but 32 minutes was too long for them. They lasted only ten, without scoring a run, before Matanga was trapped lbw by Nicolson to end the match. In the end the last four wickets had fallen in six overs for only six runs. The youngster Mugava played the leading part for Mid-West Rhinos in the final innings, taking four for 56 with his off-breaks and also running out Mahwire. Full scorecard below the cut.
Rhinos 181 (71.3 overs; Nyathi 55, Sikandar Raza 2/5) & 326/9d (93.3 overs; Sibanda 104, Chibhabha 5/66), Rocks 199 (86.4 overs; Mahwire 66, Lewis 7/37) & 210 (99.3 overs; Matsikenyeri 93, Mugava 4/56). Midwest Rhinos win by 98 runs.
[Match report via ZC]
Mountaineers and Tuskers had to settle for a draw on the final day of their Castle Logan cup match at Mutare Sports club, with youngsters Kevin Kasuza and Tendai Chatara’s performances earning Mountaineers a point over Tuskers for a first innings lead. Despite the match being reduced to only one innings per side and no play being possible on the 2nd day, Mountaineers in their usual aggressive temperament, took a first innings lead with entitles them to a bonus point.
Zimbabwe under-19 opener, Kevin Kasuza (92), on his first class debut scored a half century along with Hamilton Masakadza (82) and Timycen Maruma (62) posted a competitive 328 runs all out for the home side. Kasuza continued his courageous performances from Zimbabwe under-19’s January tour to South Africa with an innings that featured 11 boundaries and two sixes. Keegan Meth starred for Tuskers with six for 58 runs in 23.4 overs.
Steven Trenchard top scored in the match with 124 run after wicket-keeper batsman, Adam Wheater (80), had initiated a decent chase for the Tuskers’ upper in the order but the visitors only managed to score 290 runs in the chase. Trenchard’s knocked five sixes and nine boundaries before being trapped lbw by Maruma. Mountaineers’ 38 run first innings lead was thanks in a main to Tendai Chatara’s five-wicket-haul for 56 in 21 overs. Scorecard below the cut.
Mountaineers 328 (106.4 overs; Kasuza 92, Meth 6/58), Tuskers 290 (77 overs; Trenchard 124, Chatara 5/56). Match drawn.
[Match report via ZC]
The draw at Masvingo Sports Club was not inevitable, but it could really only be decided if the home batsmen had collectively given their innings away at the hands of Mashonaland Eagles. As it was, some sound batting by the later Southern Rocks players, notably Robertson Chinyengetere with a fighting 71, made the match safe, and after that it died a lingering death until being put down at the earliest possible moment allowed by the laws. The pitch had been dead all the time, and it usually takes the match with it.
Overnight Rocks were 287 for seven, facing the heavy but slow Eagles total of 510. They therefore needed another 71 runs to avoid the follow-on with only three wickets left. Even on such a pitch, the odds were probably against them, but those same odds made it likely that, even if they did follow on, they should be able to bat out the rest of the day. But it all depended on the Rocks’ state of mind.
That state of mind was strong. The overnight pair of Chinyengetere and Tafadzwa Kamungozi was very watchful and very determined, once Kamungozi had survived a hard high chance in the slips in the first over of the day, bowled by Chad Keegan. Tino Mutombodzi continued to bowl from the north end of the ground, as he had done for most of the previous day, generally pushing the ball through fairly flat and often bowling round the wicket to aim for the footmarks at the other end. Not surprisingly, he grew tired and, although being kept on to the end of the innings, he was unable to wrap up the innings in time for his team to enforce the follow-on.
Chinyengetere reached his invaluable fifty by pulling a ball from Mutombodzi for four; he was in fact quick on the hook and pull when bowlers of any speed pitched short, keeping the ball on the ground but generally getting only ones or two. Most of the runs came in this fashion, through steady accumulation in small currency. The partnership had added 74 when Kamungozi finally sliced a catch into the covers off Mutombodzi to depart for 24; 329 for eight.
Nine runs later, Chinyengetere’s fighting innings came to an end, as quite unexpectedly he pushed a ball from Mutombodzi into the hands of silly mid-off. Both these batsmen had fought very well, but fell victims not so much to the pitch or the bowlers as to lapses of concentration. This is a common failing in Zimbabwean batsmen, and explains why scorecards are so full of batsmen making tens, twenties and thirties, but failing to cash in for a really significant score.
The last pair now needed 23 runs to save the follow-on – and it was fortunate for Southern Rocks that in this match they had reasonable batsmen down to number eleven. Brian Vitori joined Hilary Matanga, and this pair continued the fight, waiting for the right ball and taking mostly the ones and twos. At lunch seven runs were still needed, but even had they failed the team would have had to bat abysmally to be dismissed in the last two sessions. Finally, twelve minutes after lunch, the landmark was passed, and they added another 18 runs before Vitori was dismissed lbw to Innocent Chinyoka for 10, Matanga remaining unbeaten for an admirable 33. Mutombodzi in his 57 overs finished with seven for 137.
The rest of the match was purely academic, as Eagles batted a second time with a draw now a certainty. The best that can be said for most of the visiting batsmen was that they were not playing for their averages. Forster Mutizwa played briskly for 36, but the real exception was Simba Gupo, who built on his first-innings century with a carefully compiled 67 not out, making 214 runs in the match for once out, to a brilliant catch. If he builds on this, he will have a fine future. Scorecard below the cut.
Eagles 510 (169.3 overs; Gupo 147, Mahwire 2/71) & Eagles 140/5 (37 overs; Gupo 67*, Kamungozi 2/37), Rocks 379 (134 overs; Sikandar Raza 93, Mutombodzi 7/137). Match drawn.
[Match report via ZC]