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Zim fight to stay in

Enock Muchinjo

EVEN with the possibility of the odd upset in a cricket game, Zimbabwe’s double-header defeat at the hands of the West Indies last weekend was

largely expected.

Facing another couple of matches this weekend in Guyana, Kevin Curran’s team will aim to at least come back into contention by avoiding two defeats like they did last weekend. The ideal situation for Zimbabwe after the two games tomorrow and Sunday will be to bring the seven-match ODI series to 3-1, otherwise any result will be pretty much a basic game-over scenario for Zimbabweans.

Zimbabwe lost both games on Saturday and Sunday.

The demanding Curran will obviously be looking for collective effort from his inexperienced charges after only a couple showed interest in proceedings at the weekend.

“Obviously it’s going to be hard,” said cricket commentator, Dean du Plessis. “We have seen a lot of talent and potential, especially Prosper Utseya who bowls well under tight conditions. We rely heavily on him. We have also seen potential in (Chamunorwa) Chibhabha. Getting two half centuries at this tender age is an achievement for him. It is the team that is not performing as a unit.”

What is also worrying for the Zimbabweans is the lack of consistency. Opening batsmen, captain Terrence Duffin and Piet Rinke, who were the best performing players for the side against Kenya in March, found the going tough in the first two matches.

“I would want to see Piet Rinke get off to a good start at the weekend. He is a good striker of the ball but he lacks the technique and the flair and it’s going to be more difficult for him when Tino Best comes into the attack for West Indies to partner Jerome Taylor and others,” du Plessis added.

“Duffin also has to be a bit more confident like he did against Kenya when he was rotating the strike to Rinke and playing good strokes himself. For him to get 26 off 80 balls even at Test level is not acceptable.”

l Meanwhile, IndependentSport can reveal that Zimbabwe Cricket have offered a coaching job to former West Indian cricketer, Bill Bourne. ZC sources said the union intended to restructure the team’s coaching department where Kevin Curran is coach.

Bourne, a Barbadian, played club cricket in Zimbabwe in the 1980s for the Universals Club as an overseas player after retiring from first-class cricket.

Now 53, Bourne played first class cricket for Barbados and English County side Warwickshire between 1970 and 1977.

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