|Scorecard:||Matabeleland v Mashonaland|
HEATH Streak put up a polished all-round performance to lead Matabeleland to a five-wicket victory over Mashonaland on the third day of their Logan Cup match at Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo on Sunday.
Streak took seven wickets as Mashonaland, who made 285 in their first innings were all out for 190. He went on to make a quick 40 runs while Gregory Strydom scored 94 runs as Matabeleland, who scored 274 in their first innings, made 205 for the loss of five wickets to seal the match before tea.
Mashonaland resumed from their overnight total of 90 for the loss of four wickets. Tafadzwa Mufambisi and Chamunorwa Chibhabha were the two men at the crease on 32 and 27 runs respectively.
Mufambisi made 41 while Chibhabha scored 45. Tail-ender Tinashe Ruswa was not out on 40 as Mashonaland took a lead of 201 runs.
Streak finished with figures of seven for 55 runs with two maidens in 17 overs. Strydom, Thabo Mboyi and John Nyumbu took one wicket apiece.
Needing 202 runs to win the match, Matabeleland got off to a disastrous start, losing their top three batsmen cheaply. Their opening pair of Wisdom Siziba and Mbekezeli Mabuza put 25 runs on the board before Chibhabha bowled Siziba for 18 runs.
Matabeleland lost their second wicket without adding any runs when Mluleki Nkala fell to Chibhabha, caught by Alexander Mlambo for a duck. David Mutendera had Mabuza caught by Thomas Benade for three runs and Matabeleland had lost another wicket for no run. Strydom and Streak stabilised the Matabeleland innings with some aggressive strokes. Strydom was the more aggressive of the two and reached the half century mark after facing 35 balls with six fours and two sixes in 68 minutes at the crease.
The 80-run partnership was broken when Streak nicked a delivery from left-arm seamer Mlambo to be caught behind by Mufambisi. Left-handed Keith Dabengwa joined Strydom in Matabelelandís quest for victory and Strydom continued with his aggressive batting. The two put up 64 runs for the fifth wicket before Dabengwa fell to off-spinner Ruswa, caught by Chibhabha for 31 runs.
Strydom led Matabeleland to victory with a 36-run partnership with Tawanda Mupariwa in which Mupariwa only scored only two runs. Strydom finished unbeaten with 94 runs, which came off 65 balls with seven fours and the same number of sixes.
The match ended in dramatic style when Dion Ebrahim, bowling part-time spin, realised that Mashonaland were losing the match and bowled a deliberate wide ball which Strydom whacked away for four.
Chibhabha was the pick of the Mashonaland bowlers with two wickets, which came at the cost of 42 runs from just six overs. Mutendera, Mlambo and Ruswa took one wicket each.
(Article: Copyright © 2004 Mehluli Sibanda)
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