Castle Logan Cup

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Eagles Maintain Logan Cup Dominance with Win over Tuskers

Mashonaland Eagles completed a ninth-wicket victory over Matabeleland Tuskers with ease at Harare Sports Club in their Logan Cup match, as the visitors put in a disappointing display and showed little real fight as they went under. Trevor Garwe had another good day, taking five wickets in the innings, and some dashing batting by the Eagles opening batsmen gave the match an entertaining finish. Apart from a fighting partnership between Sean Williams and Keith Dabengwa, Tuskers submerged with scarcely a bubble.

Tuskers were 70 for four wickets overnight, still 20 runs behind after Eagles had taken a 90-run lead on the first innings. They had not added to this total when they lost the second of the two night-watchmen they had used the previous evening, Chris Mpofu, well caught low in the slips by Forster Mutizwa off Elton Chigumbura for 1.

This brought in Dabengwa to join Williams, and the pair put on the one substantial partnership of the innings. At first it hardly looked likely to survive, as Williams was dropped in the slips off Chigumbura with only a single to his credit, and Dabengwa made a very shaky start and was lucky to survive for long. Within minutes he had almost popped a catch to mid-off, then lobbed a ball over midwicket and almost ran himself out looking for an unlikely second run for the mishit. Then he settled down to give Williams good support.

The Tuskers captain's best strokes were through the covers, where he drove handsomely. The pair had added 63 invaluable runs, almost doubling the total, when Raymond Price rather belatedly came on to bowl, and immediately broke through. Williams moved across his stumps and was adjudged lbw for 33.

This was virtually the end of the Tuskers' resistance. Mbeke Mabuza batted a while without scoring before being out lbw shouldering arms to a ball from Garwe, and we had the rather ridiculous situation of a fine strokeplayer like Greg Strydom, who has a double-century to his credit, coming in at number nine, thanks to the decision of the team to use two night-watchmen.

Had Dabengwa stayed, another good stand might well have been possible, but the left-hander was going through another shaky period, and this time he did not survive it. He mistimed a drive off Garwe, skying the ball for mid-on to take the catch running back. He had made 35, the top score for his team.

Strydom hit two belligerent fours in an over from Garwe, but Keegan Meth popped a bouncer from Chigumbura tamely to short leg, bringing the last man, John Nyumbu. Eagles then fell back on the questionable tactic of giving up trying to dismiss Strydom, but simply keeping him away from the bowling so as to attack Nyumbu. On this occasion it worked, as Strydom is probably - and certainly looked - unused to batting in a situation like this. He finally tried to scoop a ball from Kyle Jarvis to leg, but only succeeded in popping up a simple catch to the keeper. He made 12, and the innings total was a disappointing 153. Garwe finished with five wickets for 43, well earned for good bowling, if slightly flattered by the feeble batting. There were two wickets each for Chigumbura and Jarvis.

This left Eagles a mere 64 runs for victory after lunch. The openers Sam Mwakayeni and Tafadzwa Mufambisi went like a train from the start, as if determined to emphasize their team's superiority and get the match over in time for siesta. Tuskers opened the bowling with Nyumbu, an enterprising move which failed to pay, as he lasted just two overs for 19 runs. The pacemen were also hammered with gay abandon, and the 50 came up in half an hour before Mufambisi miscued a drive off Meth to the cover sweeper and departed for 18.

This did slow the breathtaking momentum a little, but it still took less than ten overs to reach the target, the winning hit being a lofted straight drive for four by Mutizwa. Mwakayeni finished with 34 not out from just 22 balls, and must have wished he had shown similar enterprise in his first innings, where his painful 28 lasted 124 balls. Thus Eagles finished the match in complete dominance, and only a major turn of events can prevent them from winning the Logan Cup this season.

The two teams meet again on Tuesday 15 December at the same venue for their Faithwear Cup match, played over 50 overs per side. Eagles have been less dominant in this competition, but Tuskers will have to make a major turnaround if they are to secure a measure of revenge. Full scorecard below the cut.
Tuskers 217 (76.4 overs; Strydom 71, Lamb 4/38) & 153 (54.4 overs; Dabengwa 35, Garwe 5/43), Eagles 307 (99.1 overs; Lamb 72, Dabengwa 3/42) & 66/1 (Mwakayeni 34*, Meth 1/9). Eagles win by 9 wickets.
Source: ZC

Rain Spoils Rhinos v Rocks

For the third match in a row, Southern Rocks were frustrated by rain as their match against Midwest Rhinos in Kwekwe petered out to a draw. With two full days lost to rain, and interruptions on the remaining days, Rocks' bastmen got to face all of 2 balls in the match. Rhinos did at least get to complete an innings, scoring 185 in an uncharacteristically poor batting display, and will at least be pleased that the weather potentially saved their blushes and made sure they came out of the match with more points for the tournament table than Rocks did. Full scorecard below the cut.
Rhinos 185 (60.3 overs; Chapungu 75, Matanga 3/50), Rocks 0/0 (0.2 overs). Match drawn.

Rocks and Eagles Draw, Too

The other match of the round also ended in a draw, but in this one there was at least the chance of a result as Eagles very nearly snatched a win in Masvingo. Day one was washed out, and when play finally got under way on day two it was the home side at the crease, sent in to bat after Eagles won the toss. Over the course of the next day and a bit they managed to amass a reasonable total of 321, a decent innings by the standards of the Logan Cup this year, with Tendai Chitongo (66) and Craig Ervine (60) leading the way. For Eagles, Trevor Garwe continued to stake out his claim to a place in the national side, taking 4/59. But the match was all Eagles' from there - in reply, they built an impressive total of 512 before declaring with two wickets still in hand. Forster Mutizwa (113) and Greg Lamb (106) both scored tons, with 50s coming from Tafadzwa Mufambisa (58), Elton Chigumbura (84) and Regis Chakabva (53). At the point of declaration, Eagles has around two sessions left on the final day in which to bowl Rocks out and claim the win.

And they just about managed it, to. Rocks did manage to hold out for the rest of the day, but with the side having collapsed to 104/8 before the close they would have been breathing a sigh of relief when the end finally came. Alester Maregwede's 21* was the best of a very poor bunch, while Elton Chigumbura (3/26) and Douglas Hondo (3/20) did the damage with the ball. Eagles would have been upset not to sneak the win, but they still took the lions' share of points from the match, scoring 13 to Rocks' 9 and further extending their lead at the top of the table. Full scorecard below the cut.
Rocks 321 (122.1 overs; Chitongo 66, Garwe 4/59) & 104/8 (47.2 overs; Maregwede 21*, Hondo 3/20), Eagles 512/8 decl (124.4 overs; Mutizwa 113, Mawhire 5/92). Match drawn.

Mountaineers and Tuskers Draw

Very little to write about with this one, as the match ended up a tame draw with both sides claiming 6 points from the encounter. Mountaineers got the better of what play there was, racking up 348/6 in their available time after bowling Tuskers out for a paltry 195, but with little to fight for results-wise it was little more than batting practice. Gavin Ewings' 58 was the only knock of note for Tuskers, who were undone in the main by Timycen Maruma, who took 4/30 from 15 overs bowled. In reply, there wasn't a bad knock from those Mountaineers batsmen who got to the crease, with Tino Mawoyo's 40 being the lowest completed innings (Donald Tiripano (7*) and Prosper Utseya (3*) didn't get much chance to build scores before the match ended), and there were plenty of positives from the others, with Hamilton Masakadza top-scoring on 79, while Timycen Maruma again got in on the act with a Twenty20-esque 59 off just 36 balls.

But the match was destined to be a draw, and that was that. Full scorecard below the cut.
Tuskers 195 (61 overs; Ewing 58, Maruma 4/30), Mountaineers 348/6 (88.1 overs; H Masakadza 79, Meth 2/43). Match drawn.

Eagles Spoil Rhinos' Unbeaten Record

Mashonaland Eagles maintained their position at the top of the Logan Cup table, and an unbeaten record, with a 6-wicket win over Midwest Rhinos in Harare on Friday. Rhinos had looked in control at the end of day one - having been put into bat after Eagles won the toss, Rhinos finished the day on 280/6, lead by another ton from captain Vusi Sibanda (153). The early session on day two saw them collapse to 312 all out, though, with Trevor Garwe's 3/33 doing most of the damage. In reply, Eagles innings followed a similar pattern - Forster Mutizwa's 190 did most of the work, with useful contributions from Samuel Mwakayeni (70) and Ryan Butterworth (41), but there wasn't much else on offer. Eagles still managed to reach 406, though, giving them a first innings lead of 92. Michael Chinouya's 3/35 was the best of the bunch for Rhinos.

The second innings saw a further decline by Rhinos - Malcolm Waller (54) and Graeme Cremer (61) were the good knocks, while a number of other players got starts but failed to push on as Rhinos managed just 269 before being bowled out on the morning of the final day. Elton Chigumbura's 4/67 proved very useful - the big man also managed two catches and a run-out. Eagles were left chasing a target of 176, which they chased down with only minimal drama and with six wickets (and 6 overs) left in hand. The result leaves Eagles firmly in the driving seat of the tournament, and the only unbeaten side left. Full scorecard below the cut.
Rhinos 312 (98.5 overs; Sibanda 153, Grawe 3/33) & 269 (97.3 overs; Cremer 61, Chigumbura 4/67), Eagles 406 (117.3 overs; Mutizwa 190, Chinouya 3/35) & 176/4 (34.1 overs; Mwakayeni 46, Sibanda 2/45). Eagles win by 6 wickets.

Lost Day's Play Leads to Draw in Masvingo

Mountaineers and Southern Rocks played out a rather pointless draw in Masvingo after a waterlogged pitch led to the loss of the first days' play in their Logan Cup match-up in Masvingo. When play finally got underway on day two, Mountaineers were put in to bat after the hosts won the toss and went on to score a decent 350 - but with their innings taking the match into day three it also ensure there was almost no chance of a result. Stuart Matsikenyeri's 97 was the backbone of the Mountaineers innings, while Hilary Matanga took an impressive 5/98. Rocks then went on to score 237 in their first innings, with Craig Irvine's 63 leading the way while Timycen Maruma took 6/100. With Rocks only being bowled out on the morning of day four, though, Moutaineers' second innings was little more than a practice knock, which they used to rack up 145/4 before play ended.

Mountaineers come out of the match slightly better off, with 12 points to Rocks' 10, but it was hardly the most exciting of matches. Full scorecard below the cut.
Mountaineers 350 (139.2 overs; Matsikenyeri 97, Matanga 5/98) & 145/4 decl (47 overs; Marumisa 56*, Tikolo 1/18), Rocks 237 (Ervine 63, Maruma 6/100). Match Drawn.

Eagles Soar as Mountaineers Fall

Mashonaland Eagles claimed their third win of the competition in Mutare in the other Logan Cup match of the week, cementing their position at the top of the table. Batting first after being put in by Eagles, Mountaineers managed only a meagre 291 from their first innings, with Stuart Matsikenyeri accounting for 110 of them. Some support came from Tino Mawoyo (42) and Jethro Maudzi (57), but otherwise it was an unremarkable innings by the Mutare side. Trevor Garwe took 4/59 for Eagles. In reply, Eagles cemented their early advantage by scoring 315, giving them a small first-innings lead of 24. Greg Lamb's 85 was the best of the bunch, with Regis Chakabva (55) also claiming a half-ton as Eagles put in a more balanced batting display.

Mountaineers' second innings had more players getting decent knocks - Hamilton Masakadza led the scoring with 52, while Stuart Matsikenyeri (50) and Timycen Maruma (47) also chipped in - but the failure of others to push on once again left them with a score that looked decidedly sub-par for a side that prides itself on its batting talent. 249 was the score when they were bowled out - Kyle Jarvis took 6/60 for Eagles, who were left chasing 226 to win in their second innings. It was a target that was chased down with minimum fuss, with Forster Mutizwa's unabaten 90 leading the way, ably supported by Greg Lamb's 77 not-out. Eagles claimed the victory with 6 wickets to spare. Full scorecard below the cut.
Mountaineers 291 (83.4 overs; Matsikenyeri 110, Garwe 4/59) & 249 (65.5 overs; H Masakadza 52, Jarvis 6/60), Eagles 315 (87.4 overs; Lamb 85, Maruma 4/88) & 227/4 (49.3 overs; Mutizwa 90*, Ncube 2/39). Eagles win by 6 wickets.

Tuskers, Rhinos Draw in Rain-Affected Match

The Logan Cup headed into its second set of match-ups this week after a few weeks off, with the first match being the pairing of Tuskers and Rhinos in Bulawayo. After winning the toss, Tuskers got off to a flyer in their first innings, totalling 418. Charles Coventry led the charge with 100, while Gavin Ewing (62), Greg Strydom (55) and Keegan Meth (67) also made significant contributions. For Rhinos, Graeme Cremer did most of the damage with an impressive 7-wicket haul. Tuskers continued their good work when Rhinos came to bat, though, restricting the Kwekwe side to just 207, with Vusi Sibanda's 111 the only score of note. Chris Mpofu led the Tuskers bowling with 5/52.

That left Rhinos following-on, and between tons from Brendan Taylor (168) and new signing Riki Wessels (114) and interruptions due to rain, the side petered out to a draw, with Rhinos closing the final day on 419/7. Mpofu again was the best of the Tuskers attack, taking 3/56. Full scorecard below the cut.
Tuskers 418 (119.2 overs; Coventry 100, Cremer 7/124), Rhinos 207 (61.4 overs; Sibanda 111, Mpofu 5/52) & 419/7 (following on; 109 overs; Taylor 168, Mpofu 3/56). Match drawn.

Tuskers Finally Off the Mark with Huge Win Over Rocks

Tuskers beat Masvingo-based Southern Rocks by an huge margin of an innings and 241 runs in the Logan Cup over the weekend. Southerns failed to show a winning attitude from the first ball with, Blessing Mahwire and Thomas Odoyo giving unnecessary runs to the visiting Tuskers. Tendai Chisoro tried to repair the damage caused by his seniors as he topped the bowlers list with figures of 3/79, while Tafadzwa Kamungozi and Hillary Matanga bagged two wickets each while Odoyo got one wicket. Tuskers, who had won the toss, batted exceptionally well with Terence Duffin scoring a career best 144, while Dion Ebrahim (89), Gavin Ewing (68), Keith Dabengwa (56) Keegan Meth (44) all chipped in on the way to a healthy total of 554/9, at which point Tuskers skipper Gregory Strydom decided to declare.

Rocks went in to bat but put in a woeful performance - in their first innings they managed just 141 runs all out, with notable performances from tail-end batsmen Odoyo (39) and Hilary Matanga (24) saving the side from even greater disaster. Steve Marrillier (20) was the only other Rocks player to reach double figures. Paceman Tawanda Mupariwa was the pick of the Tusker's bowlers, taking 4/27 runs, with John Nyumbu taking 2/28. With Rocks still 413 runs behind, the follow-on was enforced, but while Rocks were slightly better the second time around, it was still nowhere near good enough to salvage a draw. Blessing Mahwire made an impressive 61 runs while Eric Chauluka and Chisoro made 22 runs each, but Tuskers bowled Rocks out for 199, Nyumbu again leading the bowling figures with 4/42.

Tuskers' Tawanda Mupariwa
Tuskers' Tawanda Mupariwa

Coming out of losing three matches in a row, Tuskers coach Robin Brown was a happy man, and was keen to see his charges repeat their win in tomorrow's Faithwear meeting between the two sides. He is not likely to change his squad for that encounter. Full scorecard for this match is below the cut.
Tuskers 554/9 decl (157 overs; Duffin 144, Chisoro 3/79), Rocks 141 (67 overs; Odoyo 35, Mupariwa 4/37) & 199 (following on, 126.1 overs; Mawhire 61, Nyumbu 4/42). Matabeleland Tuskers win by an innings and 214 runs.
Image &copy ZC

Rhinos Complete Turnaround to Edge Past Mountaineers

An eventful first day in the Logan Cup meeting between Mountaineers and Midwest Rhinos in Harare left it looking as though Rhinos were on the rocks, but an outstanding second-innings comeback saw them edge past Mountaineers by 19 runs to claim yet another win. Put into bat after Mountaineers won the toss, Rhinos managed a paltry 136 in their first knock, with Timycen Maruma (6/40) scything through the batting lineup - only four batsmen reached double figures, with Innocent Chikunya's 54 going a long way to sparing Rhinos' blushes. Mountaineers didn't do much better initially, ending the first day on 142/5, but come day two they found their footing and, led by Jethro Maudzi's composed 105 (on his first-class debut), progressed to 303 before Rhinos finally took their final wicket. Dylon Higgins, also on debut, took an impressive 6/93 for Rhinos and marked himself out as another spinner to watch, while Rememberance Nyathi took 3/44.

That left Rhinos trailing by 167 at the start of the second innings and still facing an uphill battle, but it was that man Vusi Sibanda who again put in an innings worthy of a captain to give Rhinos a fighting chance - he added 215, his third career-best innngs of the season, to lead his side to a total of 416. Friday Kasteni (38) and Rememberance Nyathi (36) were the best of the rest, while Timycen Maruma took 4/127 for Mountaineers. Mountaineers then had to chase 250 to win the match, and Rhinos made sure not to make it easy for them - apart from Johnson Marumisa's 64, none of the Mountaineers batsmen were able to push on past the 30 mark, and with Dylon Higgins again starring with the ball & taking 5/58 to bring his haul for the match to 11/151, Rhinos managed to bowl the home side out for 230 to secure a win that had looked highly unlikely just a few days before.

Their poor first innings performance did mean that Rhinos didn't claim as many points from the match as they would have liked, though, and with all sides having played four matches they're now one point off the lead, behind Mashonaland Eagles, while Mountaineers, with the same win/loss record as the sides above them, are five points behind Rhinos. Full scorecard below the cut.
Rhinos 136 (44.1 overs; Chikunya 54, Maruma 6/40) & 416 (103.5 overs; Sibanda 215, Maruma 4/127), Moutaineers 303 (106.4 overs; Maudzi 105, Higgins 6/93) & 230 (77.5 overs; Marumisa 64, Higgins 5/58). Midwest Rhinos win by 19 runs.

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