Pro50 Championship action gets 2022/23 season underway

The Pro50 Championship will get Zimbabwe Cricket’s 2022/23 domestic season underway this weekend.

In the opening matches of the men’s provincial one-day competition on Saturday, Eagles will host Tuskers at Old Hararians Sports Club, while Southern Rocks will take on Rhinos at Masvingo Sports Club.

The same sides will face each other again at the same venues on Monday.

Mountaineers will only start the defence of their Pro50 Championship title next Friday when they visit Rhinos at Kwekwe Sports Club, with the two teams completing their back-to-back fixtures the following Monday.

On the same days, Tuskers will be entertaining Rocks at Queens Sports Club.

The Pro50 Championship round-robin fixtures will run up to 30 October, with the final taking place at Harare Sports Club on 5 November.

This will be immediately followed by the Regional Series, with the Northerns and Southerns select sides clashing in three 50-over matches set for 9, 12 and 14 November in Bulawayo.

After the completion of the one-day games, the Logan Cup will then get underway, with the first fixtures in the first-class competition scheduled for 22-25 November and pitting Eagles against Rocks at Old Hararians Sports Club and Mountaineers versus Rhinos at Harare Sports Club.

The next four-day matches are pencilled in for 29 November-2 December, when title-holders Tuskers will face Rocks at Old Hararians Sports Club, while Rhinos and Eagles will be tussling it out at Kwekwe Sports Club.

Bulawayo and Mutare will get their turn to host Logan Cup matches when Tuskers welcome Rhinos at Queens Sports Club while Mountaineers will take on Eagles at Mutare Sports Club from 8-11 December.

The following fixtures, scheduled for 15-18 December, will see Rocks at home to Mountaineers at Masvingo Sports Club, with Eagles away to Tuskers at Bulawayo Athletic Club.

After a short bre0ak for the festive holidays, action will resume in January and run up until the final first-class games set for 15-18 February.

Between 28 March and 14 April, Southerns and Northerns will meet in three four-day matches that are part of the Regional Series.

2022/23 MEN’S DOMESTIC SEASON FIXTURES:

DATE

COMPETITION

FIXTURE

VENUE

1 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Eagles v Tuskers

Old Hararians

Rocks v Rhinos

Masvingo Sports Club

3 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Eagles v Tuskers

Old Hararians

Rocks v Rhinos

Masvingo Sports Club

7 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Tuskers v Rocks

Queens Sports Club

Rhinos v Mountaineers

Kwekwe Sports Club

9 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Tuskers v Rocks

Queens Sports Club

Rhinos v Mountaineers

Kwekwe Sports Club

13 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Rocks v Eagles

Masvingo Sports Club

Mountaineers v Tuskers

Mutare Sports Club

15 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Rocks v Eagles

Masvingo Sports Club

Mountaineers v Tuskers

Mutare Sports Club

22 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Rhinos v Eagles

Kwekwe Sports Club

Mountaineers v Rocks

Mutare Sports Club

24 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Rhinos v Eagles

Kwekwe Sports Club

Mountaineers v Rocks

Mutare Sports Club

28 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Eagles v Mountaineers

Old Hararians

Tuskers v Rhinos

Queens Sports Club

30 Oct

Pro50 Championship

Eagles v Mountaineers

Old Hararians

Tuskers v Rhinos

Queens Sports Club

5 Nov

Pro50 Championship

Third-Place Playoff

Old Hararians

Final

Harare Sports Club

9 Nov

Regional List A

Southerns v Northerns

Bulawayo Athletic Club

12 Nov

Regional List A

Southerns v Northerns

Queens Sports Club

14 Nov

Regional List A

Southerns v Northerns

Queens Sports Club

22-25 Nov

Logan Cup

Eagles v Rocks

Old Hararians

Mountaineers v Rhinos

Harare Sports Club

29 Nov-2 Dec

Logan Cup

Rhinos v Eagles

Kwekwe Sports Club

Rocks v Tuskers

Old Hararians

8-11 Dec

Logan Cup

Mountaineers v Eagles

Mutare Sports Club

Tuskers v Rhinos

Queens Sports Club

15-18 Dec

Logan Cup

Rocks v Mountaineers

Masvingo Sports Club

Tuskers v Eagles

Bulawayo Athletic Club

7-10 Jan

Logan Cup

Tuskers v Mountaineers

Harare Sports Club

Rhinos v Rocks

Old Hararians

14-17 Jan

Logan Cup

Rhinos v Rocks

Harare Sports Club

Eagles v Tuskers

Old Hararians

23-26 Jan

Logan Cup

Mountaineers v Tuskers

Old Hararians

Rocks v Eagles

Harare Sports Club

30 Jan-2 Feb

Logan Cup

Eagles v Mountaineers

Old Hararians

Tuskers v Rhinos

Queens Sports Club

8-11 Feb

Logan Cup

Rhinos v Mountaineers

Kwekwe Sports Club

Rocks v Tuskers

Masvingo Sports Club

15-18 Feb

Logan Cup

Mountaineers v Rocks

Mutare Sports Club

Eagles v Rhinos

Kwekwe Sports Club

28-31 March

Regional Four-Dayer

Northerns v Southerns

Harare Sports Club

4-7 April

Regional Four-Dayer

Northerns v Southerns

Harare Sports Club

11-14 April

Regional Four-Dayer

Northerns v Southerns

Harare Sports Club

Mountaineers clinched the Pro50 Championship title after defeating Southern Rocks by 71 runs

Mountaineers beat Rocks to clinch Pro50 Championship title

Mountaineers – 307-9 in 50 overs (PJ Moor 76, Wellington Masakadza 66, Donald Tiripano 45; Dylan Hondo 4/25, Cuthbert Musoko 4/59, Roy Kaia 1/32)

Southern Rocks – 236 all out in 45.5 overs (Innocent Kaia 82, Sikandar Raza 76, Cephas Zhuwao 28; John Masara 4/43, Tony Munyonga 2/30, Wellington Masakadza 2/39)

 

Mountaineers won by 71 runs

Mountaineers clinched the Pro50 Championship title after defeating Southern Rocks by 71 runs in an exciting final played at Harare Sports Club on Sunday.

 

PJ Moor and Kevin Kasuza gave Mountaineers the ideal start on winning the toss, as they put together a superb opening partnership of 126 in just over 20 overs.

Moor, back from injury, was in blistering form and attacked the bowling powerfully, taking advantage of the opening powerplay overs to reach fifty off only 26 balls.

He was particularly severe on the pace bowlers, but found it harder to get on top of the slower bowlers, especially Dylan Hondo, who bowled a superb spell of left-arm spin.

Moor, frustrated, finally went for a big hit, only to be caught on the midwicket boundary for 76, scored off 58 balls.

His brilliant innings included 12 fours and a six.

 

Hondo began a collapse that could have shattered the innings, as in quick succession he pulled off two return catches to dismiss Kasuza for 42 and Kudzai Sauramba for two.

 

He also had Timycen Maruma caught at slip second ball.

Mountaineers were now tottering on 132 for four in the 25th over, and the innings was at a crucial stage.

However, the middle order came good to rescue the innings.

Tony Munyonga led the way with 36 off 32 balls, with two sixes and three fours, before he was bowled by Roy Kaia at 179 for five.

Then came a magnificent partnership of 99 in 14 overs between Donald Tiripano, 45 off 58 balls, and Wellington Masakadza, 66 off 49 balls.

They took the score to 278, and after they and Shingi Masakadza all went in quick succession, some powerful blows from Victor Nyauchi, with 14 not out off eight balls, saw Mountaineers past the 300-run mark.

 

Their total after 50 overs was 307 for nine.

Amid this carnage, Hondo’s bowling figures shine out like a beacon – four wickets for only 25 runs in his 10 overs, which included three maidens.

Cuthbert Musoko also took four wickets, the last four to fall, but they cost him 59 runs off seven overs.

Sikandar Raza also bowled well for 42 runs off his 10 overs without taking a wicket.

Innocent Kaia opened the Rocks innings with Cephas Zhuwao, always a man to be feared in one-day cricket, against the bowling of Tendai Chatara and Nyauchi.

Zhuwao scored two singles off the first six balls he faced, like a dormant volcano, and then began his assault by hitting Chatara for six.

He followed with two fours off three deliveries from Nyauchi, and then came another six off Chatara.

To the immense relief of Mountaineers, though, Chatara caught him off the bowling of Nyauchi for 28 off 18 balls in the sixth over, with the score on 48.

Innocent Kaia, however, was able to score freely, and he was now partnered by Tadiwanashe Marumani, who scored 17 off 33 balls before being bowled by Munyonga at 102 for two in the 18th over.

Innocent Kaia reached his fifty off 60 balls, and his new partner, Raza, soon hit Munyonga for six.

The pair continued to build their partnership soundly and after 30 overs Rocks were well on course for a possible victory at 165 for two.

The partnership came to an end at 176, though, when Kaia retired hurt after suffering cramps on 76, and this proved to be the turning point of the match.

He was replaced by Brian Mudzinganyama, who immediately saw Raza reach his fifty off 46 balls.

Mudzinganyama did not last long, being caught and bowled by Wellington Masakadza for seven at 200 for three in the 36th over.

Another 108 runs were now needed in 14 overs, but there were still seven wickets in hand if Innocent Kaia was able to resume.

Roy Kaia now came to the crease, but scored only three before he was caught off Wellington Masakadza at 211 for four in the 39th over.

Two overs later the balance of the match shifted completely as Rocks suffered a bitter blow in the loss of Raza, who was caught by Moor off the leg-spinner John Masara for a fine 76.

He faced 71 balls, hitting two sixes and seven fours, and this vital wicket, at 217 for five in the 41st over and a run rate of almost 10 an over now, put Mountaineers right on top.

Innocent Kaia now returned to the crease, but he was soon out, caught by Maruma off Masara for 82 – altogether he faced 105 balls and hit a six and eight fours, and left with the score 228 for six in the 43rd over.

Without addition, Larvet Masunda was caught by Chatara off Munyonga for four, and Rocks were now without hope.

The end came quickly, as the tail collapsed and the team was all out for 236 in the 46th over.

When the pressure was on, they lost their last eight wickets for only 36 runs, and their last seven batters scored only 21 runs among them.

Masara, who did most of the cleaning up at the end, took four wickets for 43 runs in his 10 overs, while fellow spinners Wellington Masakadza and Munyonga took two each.

It was a fine victory for Mountaineers, and will do much to make up for their failure to win the Logan Cup this season.

 

After shining with both bat and ball in the final, Wellington Masakadza was voted the player of the match.

 

Ben Compton of Mountaineers was not available for the game but he had done enough during the round-robin stage of the one-day competition to earn the batter of the tournament accolade.

 

Sean Williams of Tuskers claimed the best bowler honours.

 

Raza was rewarded for his impressive all-round performances as he was named the Pro50 Championship player of the tournament.

It’s free to download and we hope as many fans, club members, players and administrators will enjoy this new digital experience

ZC launches new app to bring cricket right into fans’ palms

Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) is delighted to announce the launch of its new mobile app that is set to revolutionise fan engagement with domestic cricket across the country.

 

Known simply as Zimbabwe Cricket, the app has been developed in partnership with ZC’s new official scoring partner, the India-based CricHeroes.

 

Through the app, which is free to download and available across both iOS and Android devices, fans will have access to ball-by-ball coverage of ZC’s major domestic competitions and stay up to speed with results and statistics from leagues across the country.

 

The app also includes interactive functionality such as quizzes and polls.

 

For game administrators, the platform provides easier competition management and participant scheduling.

 

“We are delighted to unveil the Zimbabwe Cricket app which brings our domestic game right into your palm, giving you access to live scores, results, fixtures and statistics from all our competitions and leagues,” ZC Managing Director Givemore Makoni said.

 

“This app, which has been developed to bring fans closer to their favourite teams and players, further demonstrates ZC’s commitment to innovation and the growth of the game.

 

“It’s free to download and we hope as many fans, club members, players and administrators will enjoy this new digital experience.”

This match was their exit from the competition, while Mountaineers will challenge Southern Rocks in the Pro50 Championship final on a date yet to be confirmed.

Maunze, Kamunhukamwe hit fifties before rain washes out game

Alliance Health Eagles – 193-4 in 36.1 overs (Kudzai Maunze 74, Tinashe Kamunhukamwe 62, Marshal Takodza 37*; Brighton Chipungu 2/51, John Masara 1/21, Shingi Masakadza 1/33)

Mountaineers –

No result

Sparkling innings from Kudzai Maunze and Tinashe Kamunhukamwe dominated the play at Harare Sports Club on Friday in the second Pro50 Championship match between Alliance Health Eagles and Mountaineers, before rain washed out the game.

Eagles won the toss on their home ground, but, after their defeat batting second in Wednesday’s match, they broke with tradition this time round by deciding to bat first.

By the time the rain came they must have felt well pleased with this decision, as they were in a good position to build a very challenging total for Mountaineers to chase down.

Kamunhukamwe began the innings with some fine aggressive strokes, taking the attack to the bowlers, and Victor Nyauchi’s opening spell of four overs cost 27 runs.

Eagles did lose the wicket of Gareth Chirawu, bowled by Shingi Masakadza for five.

But Maunze settled in well with Kamunhukamwe and the two of them quite dominated the bowling as they took the score to 97 before Kamunhukamwe was caught off Brighton Chipungu for a dynamic 62 off 65 balls.

Chamu Chibhabha scored only five, but Marshal Takodza next provided Maunze with a good partner, and another good start took the score to 188 before Chipungu also dismissed Maunze, who had made 74 from 80 balls.

Brad Evans had just come in when the rain began and the players left the field with the score 193 for four wickets in the 37th over –  Takodza had 37 and Evans two.

Chipungu was the most successful bowler, with two wickets for 51, having completed his 10 overs, but all the bowlers were expensive except for John Masara, who in six overs took the wicket of Chibhabha for 21 runs.

There was so much rain that the match had to be abandoned by mid-afternoon, with Eagles probably the more disappointed team.

This match was their exit from the competition, while Mountaineers will challenge Southern Rocks in the Pro50 Championship final on a date yet to be confirmed.

2021/22 PRO50 CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS TABLE

*Southern Rocks docked one point and Rhinos three points for slow over rate

  • TEAM
  • *Rocks
  • Mountaineers
  • Eagles
  • Tuskers
  • *Rhinos
  • M
  • 8
  • 8
  • 8
  • 8
  • 8
  • W
  • 6
  • 5
  • 3
  • 3
  • 1
  • L
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 5
  • 7
  • T
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • D
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • N/R
  • 1
  • 1
  • 2
  • 0
  • 0
  • PT
  • 64
  • 55
  • 40
  • 30
  • 7
  • NRR
  • -0.041
  • 1.646
  • 0.520
  • -0.394
  • -1.329
Mountaineers – 227 all out in 39.3 overs (Ben Compton 110, Tony Munyonga 25, Timycen Maruma 25; Daniel Jakiel 2/42, Malcolm Chikuwa 2/65, Tanaka Chivanga 1/25) Alliance Health Eagles – 187 all out in 37.1 overs (Tinashe Kamunhukamwe 39, Shoun Handirisi 32, Tapiwa Mufudza 25; Victor Nyauchi 3/21, Kevin Kasuza 2/14, John Masara 2/28) Mountaineers won by 40 runs Mountaineers have secured their place in the Pro50 Championship final thanks to a fine century from Ben Compton, backed by the incisive pace bowling of Victor Nyauchi, as they defeated Alliance Health Eagles by 40 runs in this Pro50 Championship match at Harare Sports Club on Wednesday. The start had to be delayed until the field had dried out after the heavy rain overnight, and the match had to be reduced to 40 overs per side. Eagles, according to tradition at their home ground, won the toss and put their opponents in to bat. For Mountaineers, 25 seemed to be a magic number, as three of their players were out for 25, and only one of the others even reached double figures. The only player to crack the 25 barrier was Compton, who opened the innings with Kevin Kasuza, the pair putting on 49 together until Kasuza was out lbw to Brad Evans – for 25. Kudzai Sauramba was run out for 17, and then Timycen Maruma and Tony Munyonga in turn were out for 25, both scored off 24 balls. Each shared a useful partnership with Compton, the largest of these being 50 for the third wicket with Maruma. Compton went on to score a fine century before being the sixth man out in the 37th over, with the score at 215 – he faced 109 balls and hit 10 fours. The rest of the wickets fell as the tail tried in vain to attack the bowling in the dying overs. The last six men in scored only 15 runs between them, and two of them were run out. With three balls to spare, Mountaineers were bowled out for 227. There were two wickets each for Daniel Jakiel and Malcolm Chikuwa, but Tanaka Chivanga and Tapiwa Mufudza were more economical, going at little over four runs an over each. Eagles found themselves unexpectedly in trouble as they chased their target, for their first three wickets went down for 27: Chamu Chibhabha was run out for four, Kudzai Maunze caught off Nyauchi for six and the same bowler also removed Marshal Takodza for seven. Tinashe Kamunhukamwe was playing a steady innings and he was now joined by the former Tuskers wicket-keeper Shoun Handirisi. The two fought hard to build a valuable fourth-wicket partnership of 64, taking the score to 91 before John Masara removed Kamunhukamwe for 39. Handirisi went soon afterwards for 32 – 106 for five – which left Evans to play the leading part, helped by the later batters. He found a valuable partner in Mufudza, and the pair by attacking play took the score to 163 before Nyauchi dismissed Evans for 25. The score was now 153 for seven after 32 overs, which left three wickets to score 75 runs in the final eight overs in fading light, an unlikely situation once Evans had gone. Mufudza did his best before he was out for the fifth score of 25 of the day, but however much the later batters tried, the task was beyond them. Eagles were all out for 187 after 37.1 overs, and Mountaineers thus won by 40 runs. The bowling of Nyauchi played a major part in deciding this match, as he took three vital wickets at important times, despite bowling only six overs, and he finished with figures of three for 21. Mountaineers will face the first-placed Southern Rocks in the Pro50 Championship final on a date yet to be confirmed, but first they have to complete the round-robin stage on Friday by again taking on Eagles who themselves will be eager to finish off their List A campaign on a high. 2021/22 PRO50 CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS TABLE

Mountaineers book place in Pro50 Championship final

Mountaineers – 227 all out in 39.3 overs (Ben Compton 110, Tony Munyonga 25, Timycen Maruma 25; Daniel Jakiel 2/42, Malcolm Chikuwa 2/65, Tanaka Chivanga 1/25)

Alliance Health Eagles – 187 all out in 37.1 overs (Tinashe Kamunhukamwe 39, Shoun Handirisi 32, Tapiwa Mufudza 25; Victor Nyauchi 3/21, Kevin Kasuza 2/14, John Masara 2/28)

Mountaineers won by 40 runs

Mountaineers have secured their place in the Pro50 Championship final thanks to a fine century from Ben Compton, backed by the incisive pace bowling of Victor Nyauchi, as they defeated Alliance Health Eagles by 40 runs in this Pro50 Championship match at Harare Sports Club on Wednesday.

The start had to be delayed until the field had dried out after the heavy rain overnight, and the match had to be reduced to 40 overs per side.

Eagles, according to tradition at their home ground, won the toss and put their opponents in to bat.

For Mountaineers, 25 seemed to be a magic number, as three of their players were out for 25, and only one of the others even reached double figures.

The only player to crack the 25 barrier was Compton, who opened the innings with Kevin Kasuza, the pair putting on 49 together until Kasuza was out lbw to Brad Evans – for 25.

Kudzai Sauramba was run out for 17, and then Timycen Maruma and Tony Munyonga in turn were out for 25, both scored off 24 balls.

Each shared a useful partnership with Compton, the largest of these being 50 for the third wicket with Maruma.

Compton went on to score a fine century before being the sixth man out in the 37th over, with the score at 215 – he faced 109 balls and hit 10 fours.

The rest of the wickets fell as the tail tried in vain to attack the bowling in the dying overs.

The last six men in scored only 15 runs between them, and two of them were run out.

With three balls to spare, Mountaineers were bowled out for 227.

There were two wickets each for Daniel Jakiel and Malcolm Chikuwa, but Tanaka Chivanga and Tapiwa Mufudza were more economical, going at little over four runs an over each.

Eagles found themselves unexpectedly in trouble as they chased their target, for their first three wickets went down for 27: Chamu Chibhabha was run out for four, Kudzai Maunze caught off Nyauchi for six and the same bowler also removed Marshal Takodza for seven.

Tinashe Kamunhukamwe was playing a steady innings and he was now joined by the former Tuskers wicket-keeper Shoun Handirisi.

The two fought hard to build a valuable fourth-wicket partnership of 64, taking the score to 91 before John Masara removed Kamunhukamwe for 39.

Handirisi went soon afterwards for 32 – 106 for five – which left Evans to play the leading part, helped by the later batters.

He found a valuable partner in Mufudza, and the pair by attacking play took the score to 163 before Nyauchi dismissed Evans for 25.

The score was now 153 for seven after 32 overs, which left three wickets to score 75 runs in the final eight overs in fading light, an unlikely situation once Evans had gone.

Mufudza did his best before he was out for the fifth score of 25 of the day, but however much the later batters tried, the task was beyond them.

Eagles were all out for 187 after 37.1 overs, and Mountaineers thus won by 40 runs.

The bowling of Nyauchi played a major part in deciding this match, as he took three vital wickets at important times, despite bowling only six overs, and he finished with figures of three for 21.

Mountaineers will face the first-placed Southern Rocks in the Pro50 Championship final on a date yet to be confirmed, but first they have to complete the round-robin stage on Friday by again taking on Eagles who themselves will be eager to finish off their List A campaign on a high.

2021/22 PRO50 CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS TABLE

*Southern Rocks docked one point and Rhinos three points for slow over rate

  • TEAM
  • *Rocks
  • Mountaineers
  • Eagles
  • Tuskers
  • *Rhinos
  • M
  • 8
  • 7
  • 7
  • 8
  • 8
  • W
  • 6
  • 5
  • 3
  • 3
  • 1
  • L
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 5
  • 7
  • T
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • D
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • N/R
  • 1
  • 0
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • PT
  • 64
  • 50
  • 35
  • 30
  • 7
  • NRR
  • -0.041
  • 1.646
  • 0.520
  • -0.394
  • -1.329
This match was their exit from the competition, while Mountaineers will challenge Southern Rocks in the Pro50 Championship final on a date yet to be confirmed.

ZC calls off Pro50 Championship match due to COVID-19

Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) has, as a precautionary measure, called off the Pro50 Championship game between Alliance Health Eagles and Mountaineers scheduled for Harare Sports Club this Thursday after four players from one of the two teams tested positive for COVID-19.

 

The cases were detected during a routine pre-match coronavirus screening exercise.

 

ZC has COVID-19 protocols in place to manage positive cases effectively with the intention of enabling its competitions to proceed while keeping all other players and participants safe.

 

The decision on the postponed match will be announced in due course.

Rhinos are still doomed to finish bottom of the Pro50 Championship table, but at least now they have one victory to their credit

Rhinos upset Tuskers to record first Pro50 Championship victory

Tuskers – 193 all out in 42.4 overs (Craig Ervine 99*, Taffy Mupariwa 17, Milton Shumba 17; Ryan Burl 2/15, Carl Mumba 2/25, Trevor Gwandu 2/31)

Rhinos – 194-6 in 42.2 overs (Johnathan Campbell 55, Nyasha Mayavo 50*, Takudzwanashe Kaitano 43; Ainsley Ndlovu 2/31, Panashe Maphosa 1/31, Ernest Masuku 1/34)

Rhinos won by four wickets

Rhinos finally recorded their first Pro50 Championship victory at Old Hararians Sports Club on Thursday as they beat Tuskers by four wickets, thanks to a magnificent fighting partnership between Johnathan Campbell and Nyasha Mayavo.

All seemed lost for Rhinos when they lost their five top batsmen for 87 runs chasing a target of 194, but these two men rose to the occasion and their sixth-wicket partnership alone almost won the match for them in the end.

Craig Ervine stood as a giant among pygmies after Tuskers were put in to bat by Rhinos.

In the first six overs of their innings, Taffy Mupariwa and Tanu Makoni put on 19 runs before the latter was caught at the wicket off Carl Mumba for six, bringing in Ervine.

Mupariwa was soon bowled by Trevor Gwandu for 17, and then followed a steady procession of partners for Ervine, none of whom managed to outscore Mupariwa.

Sean Williams scored 10 before being caught by Ryan Burl off Tashinga Musekiwa at 45 for three.

Milton Shumba made 17, a good enough start, but he was then caught at the wicket off Gwandu to make Tuskers 69 for four off 21 overs.

Thamsanqa Nunu was lbw to Mumba for nine, and then Clive Madande was caught at the wicket off Charles Kunje for 12, making the score an unpromising 123 for six in the 33rd over.

With Luke Jongwe, the last recognised batsman, now joining him at the crease, Ervine decided the time had come to accelerate.

He reached his fifty off 72 balls and celebrated it by hitting four successive fours off Kunje, and then another two in three balls off Brandon Mavuta.

With Jongwe playing steadily, he then settled down, but then came a run-out for Jongwe (7) at the hands of Campbell, which proved disastrous for Tuskers.

The score at this point was 183 for seven wickets in the 41st over, but the last three batsmen now failed completely to support Ervine.

Musekiwa bowled Ernest Masuku for two, with Ervine on 99.

Ainsley Ndlovu took a single, but Ervine was unable to reach his century off the last two deliveries, one of which went for five wides.

Burl bowled the next over: his first delivery had Ndlovu caught at the wicket, and the last man Panashe Maphosa lasted three balls before he was bowled by Burl.

The innings was over for 193, and Ervine had been left stranded on 99 not out – he fought a magnificent lone battle for 101 balls and hit 11 fours and a six.

His 10 partners managed to find the boundary just eight times among them, three of those fours coming from Mupariwa in the power-play overs.

There were two wickets each for Mumba, Gwandu, Musekiwa and Burl.

Burl returned the best figures of two for 15, but Mumba was the most economical with only 25 runs scored off his seven overs.

Set a target of 194, Rhinos had a good chance of recording their first victory of the tournament if their batsmen could hold their nerve and do their job.

They made a bad start, as off the fourth ball of the innings, with two runs on the board, Prince Masvaure was caught at the wicket off Masuku without scoring.

Kunje joined Takudzwanashe Kaitano and soon decided it was time to attack, and hit Jongwe for two fours and a six.

A promising partnership developed, but it came to an end on 49 in the 13th over, as in three deliveries Ndlovu removed Kunje and Tarisai Musakanda, both lbw.

Kaitano rather surprisingly responded to this with a flurry of fours, but it was too good to last, and four overs later he was caught off Jongwe for 43, with the score on 77 for four.

He was soon followed by Burl, caught at the wicket off Williams for eight, and at 87 for five in the 20th over Rhinos looked once again in danger of defeat.

Campbell and Mayavo now had to try to repair the damage, with not too much batting to come in their side.

They made a fine effort, hitting the bad ball well and defending safely, and as the score passed 130 the match was once again in the balance.

The bowlers tightened up, but Campbell hit Williams for a six and a four as the total passed 150.

Campbell was the more aggressive of the two, and he reached his fifty off 51 balls, while Mayavo did a fine calm job in support.

As the score passed 180 victory was not far away, but then, after the pair had added 96 together, Campbell was finally out lbw to Maphosa for 55, scored off 62 balls with a six and six fours.

At 183, victory was just 11 runs away at this stage and almost 10 overs were left.

Musekiwa was the next man in, but he had little to do.

Mayavo took the responsibility, and in the 43rd over he hit Williams for four and two, not only bringing a first victory to Rhinos, but also his own magnificent fifty, scored off 77 balls in a crisis and containing four fours.

Williams, usually a very effective one-day bowler, was surprisingly off his best form today, and overall Ndlovu did the best job, taking two wickets for 31 in his nine overs.

Rhinos are still doomed to finish bottom of the Pro50 Championship table, but at least now they have one victory to their credit, thanks to the determination of their two middle-order men when all had seemed lost.

2021/22 PRO50 CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS

  • TEAM
  • Rocks
  • Mountaineers
  • Eagles
  • Tuskers
  • *Rhinos
  • M
  • 8
  • 6
  • 6
  • 7
  • 7
  • W
  • 6
  • 4
  • 3
  • 2
  • 1
  • L
  • 1
  • 2
  • 2
  • 5
  • 6
  • T
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • N/R
  • 1
  • 0
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • PT
  • 65
  • 40
  • 35
  • 20
  • 7
  • NRR
  • -0.041
  • 1.733
  • 0.785
  • -0.823
  • -1.196
None of the Rocks bowlers were able to make much impact – perhaps, having made their place in next week’s final certain, they subconsciously relaxed and so went down to their first defeat of the tournament.

Mountaineers send Rocks tumbling to first Pro50 defeat

Southern Rocks – 131 all out in 37 overs (William Mashinge 41, Tadiwanashe Marumani 16, Brian Mudzinganyama 16; Tendai Chatara 3/43, Tony Munyonga 2/14, Wellington Masakadza 2/18)

Mountaineers – 132-2 in 22.1 overs (Ben Compton 45, Kevin Kasuza 43, Kudzai Sauramba 31*; Sikandar Raza 1/12, William Mashinge 1/24)

 

Mountaineers won by eight wickets

 

Tendai Chatara, with three wickets in his opening spell, rocked the top order of the previously unbeaten Southern Rocks team in a Pro50 Championship match at Harare Sports Club on Tuesday, resulting in a fine victory for Mountaineers by eight wickets.

Rocks batted on winning the toss, and all appeared to be going well as their openers Tadiwanashe Marumani and Brian Mudzinganyama took 34 runs off the first six overs from the international bowlers Chatara and Victor Nyauchi.

With the last ball of those overs, though, Nyauchi had Mudzinganyama caught by Donald Tiripano for 16, and Chatara opened his next over with the wicket of Marumani, caught by Ben Compton also for 16.

The table leaders never recovered from this double blow.

Ben Curran and Roy Kaia took the score past 50, but then Timycen Maruma caught Curran off Chatara for nine, and in his next over Chatara had Sikandar Raza caught by Kevin Kasuza for two; 58 for four.

Wickets continued to fall in pairs, as at 68 Kaia was caught at the wicket off Wellington Masakadza as Chatara finished his opening spell, and in the following over the keeper, Kudzai Sauramba, held another chance to remove Tafadzwa Tsiga (9) off Tiripano.

At 72 for six in the 18th over, Rocks were now in considerable trouble.

They needed a major partnership, but never found it, although William Mashinge played a fine fighting lone innings as the tail collapsed around him.

The loss of Tendai Chisoro to Tiripano for six removed the last of the other recognised batsmen with the score 90 for seven.

Blessing Muzarabani went for five and Travor Mutsamba for zero – 109 for nine – before the last man, Dylan Hondo, played a gallant defensive innings to support Mashinge, facing 24 balls before Tony Munyonga ended the innings by bowling him for five.

This left the Rocks total at 131 all out off only 37 overs, with Mashinge unbeaten on 41.

Mashinge scored his runs off 61 balls, with two sixes and for fours, and without his fine effort Rocks would have failed to reach 100.

Chatara did most of the early damage with the ball, taking three wickets for 43 without having a chance to bowl his final two overs.

There were two wickets each for Tiripano and Munyonga, while Wellington Masakadza finished with the impressive figures of two for 18 off his full 10 overs.

Mountaineers had done a wonderful job to bowl out the hitherto dominant Rocks team for only 131 and now it was up to their batters to finish the job and send their opponents to their first defeat.

Mountaineers captain Kevin Kasuza led the victory charge in fine style: in the first four overs he raced to 31 out of a score of 40, with Mutsamba travelling for 30 runs off his two overs.

Kasuza was not to complete the job himself, though, as, having scored 43 off 35 balls, including seven fours and a six, he was bowled by Mashinge with the score on 64 in the ninth over.

His opening partner Compton had given him his head, playing a sound game, and he continued to do so with Sauramba now as his partner.

They continued to keep the score moving at about a run a ball, and Mountaineers never looked like losing their grip.

Compton was stumped off Raza when he had scored 45, the team total at this stage being 125, just before victory was completed.

Maruma came in and scored a single, while Sauramba took Mountaineers through to victory with 31 not out.

None of the Rocks bowlers were able to make much impact – perhaps, having made their place in next week’s final certain, they subconsciously relaxed and so went down to their first defeat of the tournament.

*******************************************************

Alliance Health Eagles – 261 all out in 46.4 overs (Kudzai Maunze 87, Tino Mutombodzi 71, Marshal Takodza 40; Manson Chikowero 3/34, Ryan Burl 2/32, Brandon Mavuta 2/64)

Rhinos – 236-8 in 50 overs (Nyasha Mayavo 86*, Ryan Burl 56, Charles Kunje 27; Tapiwa Mufudza 3/46, Wessly Madhevere 2/38, Malcolm Chikuwa 2/48)

 

Alliance Health Eagles won by 25 runs

 

A fourth-wicket partnership of 121 between Kudzai Maunze and Tino Mutombodzi was vital for the resurgent Alliance Health Eagles who beat Rhinos by 25 runs in their Pro50 Championship match at Takashinga Sports Club on Tuesday.

Eagles, put in to bat, saw Tinashe Kamunhukamwe hit Trevor Gwandu for two fours before being caught by Ryan Burl off Carl Mumba for those eight runs.

Maunze began his innings fluently, but when Gareth Chirawu was caught by Mumba off Gwandu for two, the score was 25 for two in the fourth over.

Eagles continued to take risks in order to score quickly, and their daring policy paid off.

Third to go was Wessly Madhevere, bowled by Manson Chikowero for 19 off 14 balls at 58 for three in the eighth over.

Then came the partnership of the match as Mutombodzi joined Maunze and the pair put the Rhinos bowling to the sword with a dynamic stand of 121 in 19 overs.

Maunze again showed brilliant form in scoring 87 off 71 balls, including two sixes and 11 fours, the partnership finally ending at 179 in the 27th over when he was caught by Johnathan Campbell off Tashinga Musekiwa.

There was no respite for the bowlers as Marshal Takodza continued his recent good batting form in company with Mutombodzi.

The scoring rate did dip somewhat, as their partnership added 65 runs in 12 overs, but when Mutombodzi was caught by Burl off Brandon Mavuta for 71 (91 balls, three sixes, three fours) Eagles were beautifully placed at 244 for five in the 39th over – a score of 300 seemed assured.

However, unexpectedly, Rhinos fought back and there was a sudden batting collapse, with Takodza next to go, stumped off Mavuta for 40; 248 for six.

Mavuta finished his 10 overs, but Chikowero and Burl took advantage of his breakthrough and the tail folded against their bowling like a pack of cards.

Shoun Handirisi (7) and Tapiwa Mufudza (1) fell to Burl, Malcolm Chikuwa (3) and Daniel Jakiel (1) were caught off Chikowero, while the last man Honest Ziwira was unbeaten without scoring, and the innings crashed from 244 for four to 261 all out.

Chikowero with three wickets for 34 returned the best bowling figures, while the spinners Mavuta and Burl had two each.

Rhinos found themselves unexpectedly with a chance of victory still.

They needed one or two of their top-order men to rise to the occasion and play a big innings, but this did not happen.

Takudzwanashe Kaitano was the first man to go, caught at the wicket off Chikuwa for four.

Tarisai Musakanda again disappointed, scoring 14 before he was stumped, also off the bowling of Chikuwa.

When Charles Kunje was caught by Mutombodzi off Madhevere for 27, scored off 40 balls, the score was 58 for three in the 14th over, and a Rhinos victory was looking more unlikely.

Campbell also settled in but was unable to turn it into a major innings – he was lbw to Madhevere for 15, making the score 91 for four in the 24th over.

Nyasha Mayavo now joined Burl, and a promising partnership began to develop, as they kept their wickets up and the score ticking over.

They put on 63 together for the sixth wicket, but struggled to keep up with the run rate, until at 154 Eagles got their breakthrough, when Mufudza bowled Burl for 56 – he faced 85 balls and hit a six and six fours.

Musekiwa hit well for a while to score 15 before being bowled by Jakiel, and then Mufudza struck again.

Mumba seems to have lost the brilliant batting form he showed earlier this season as he was bowled for three by Mufudza, who then bowled Mavuta first ball.

The game was almost over for Rhinos now, 208 for eight in the 46th over, but Mayavo kept playing a superb fighting innings.

He could not do the job of securing victory single-handedly, but he stayed unbeaten to the end of the innings with 86 not out – he faced 90 balls and hit a six and seven fours.

In with him at the close was Gwandu, six not out, with the total being 236 for eight wickets.

Mufudza as usual was Eagles’ key bowler, taking three wickets for 46 in his 10 overs, while there were two wickets each to Chikuwa and Madhevere.

The Eagles victory has ensured that there will be two cracking matches at Harare Sports Club on Thursday and Saturday between them and Mountaineers, for the more successful of the two teams will meet Rocks in the Pro50 Championship final next Tuesday.

Muzarabani, Nungu, Hondo and Raza all took two wickets each and no bowler was hit for more than seven an over, so once again it was a fine team performance that contributed towards victory.

Rocks extend unbeaten run, as Rhinos’ winless streak continues

Southern Rocks – 306-6 in 50 overs (Ben Curran 88, Tadiwanashe Marumani 49, Innocent Kaia 45; John Masara 2/39, Tinashe Muchawaya 1/39, Wellington Masakadza 1/48)

Mountaineers – 296 all out in 49.4 overs (Shingi Masakadza 59, Wellington Masakadza 58, Ben Compton 56; Sikandar Raza 2/50, Blessing Muzarabani 2/53, Nkosilathi Nungu 2/57)

Southern Rocks won by 10 runs

Shingi Masakadza struck a blistering half-century but it was not enough to prevent Southern Rocks from extending their unbeaten run in the Pro50 Championship as they defeated Mountaineers by 10 runs in a thrilling match played at Harare Sports Club on Sunday.

Mountaineers won the toss and soon regretted their decision to put Rocks in to bat.

Innocent Kaia gave Rocks a fine start with a dashing innings of 45 off only 43 balls, before being bowled by Wellington Masakadza in the 14th over with the score at 82 already.

His opening partner, Tadiwanashe Marumani, was not quite as fluent as usual, but he was still doing a good job as he was joined by the Northamptonshire professional Ben Curran.

They took the score to 144 in the 27th over before Marumani was dismissed by John Masara, the seventh bowler tried, for 49 off 72 balls.

Sikandar Raza quickly hit a six and three fours as he made 27 before being caught off Shingi Masakadza, but Gabriel Jaya, on his début for Rocks, was bowled by Masara for two.

Curran and Tafadzwa Tsiga put on 58 in nine overs before Tsiga was caught by Wellington Masakadza off Tinashe Muchawaya for 25 off 30 balls.

Curran had looked poised to score a century, but he soon followed Tsiga, caught off Donald Tiripano for a fine 88 off 96 balls, with five fours, and Rocks were 260 for six in the 46th over.

Richmond Mutumbami, who rarely comes in at No 7, hit out boldly with two sixes and two fours to make 31 not out off 20 balls, helped by Blessing Muzarabani with 11 not out off 12 balls.

They successfully took Rocks past the 300 mark, the final score after 50 overs being 306 for six wickets.

Masara was the only bowler to take as many as two wickets, which he did for 39 runs, while the most economical bowler was Victor Nyauchi, whose eight overs without a wicket cost 39 runs.

Mountaineers had a difficult target to face, and Ben Compton and Gary Chirimuuta made a sound rather than spectacular start, putting up 50 on the board in the 12th over without loss.

They took the score to 79 after 18 overs before Chirimuuta went for 39 off 56 balls, caught off the spin of Raza.

The score reached 131 in the 28th over before Rocks could break through again, with Dylan Hondo then bowling Compton for 56, scored off 86 balls.

Tony Munyonga for once failed, caught and bowled by Raza for three, but Kudzai Sauramba joined Wellington Masakadza and they added 64 together for the fourth wicket.

The one problem was that they struggled to keep up with the required run rate, and when Wellington Masakadza was finally caught at the wicket by Tsiga for 58 off Hondo at 204 in the 40th over, a rate of 10 runs an over was needed.

Donald Tiripano (2) and Sauramba (39) were soon out, making the score 212 for six in the 42nd over, and more than 10 an over now required from the last four wickets.

Despite facing such a demanding run rate, Shingi Masakadza and Nyauchi tried their best, throwing their bats gallantly at the bowling.

Shingi Masakadza hit two sixes and Nyauchi one, and 47 were needed off the last four overs.

At 267 Nyauchi (16) lofted a catch off Nkosi Nungu, and it was all up to Shingi Masakadza, who hit Nungu for two sixes, so 28 were needed off the final two overs.

Shingi Masakadza hit two fours off the next over, but was finally caught at the wicket off Muzarabani for 59, which contained four sixes and four fours off only 28 balls.

PJ Moor, who had been injured in the field, came in last, but he was caught off Nungu for four with the total on 296, and Rocks had triumphed again.

Muzarabani, Nungu, Hondo and Raza all took two wickets each and no bowler was hit for more than seven an over, so once again it was a fine team performance that contributed towards victory.

**********************************************

Rhinos – 261 all out in 47.4 overs (Takudzwanashe Kaitano 73, Prince Masvaure 61, Tarisai Musakanda 34; Tapiwa Mufudza 3/38, Marshal Takodza 3/55, Daniel Jakiel 1/38)

Alliance Health Eagles – 266-4 in 42.1 overs (Marshal Takodza 76*, Tinashe Kamunhukamwe 62, Tinotenda Mutombodzi 52*; Brandon Mavuta 3/64, Manson Chikowero 1/37)

Alliance Health Eagles won by six wickets 

A brilliant century partnership between Tino Mutombodzi and Marshal Takodza took Alliance Health Eagles home to a six-wicket victory over Rhinos in their Pro50 Championship match at Takashinga Sports Club on Sunday.

This was a meeting between two struggling sides, as Eagles had won only one of their four matches in the tournament so far, while Rhinos had lost all four.

Rhinos decided to bat on winning the toss, and Takudzwanashe Kaitano and Prince Masvaure gave them the ideal start, with an excellent opening partnership of 108 in less than 20 overs, before Kaitano was caught and bowled by Wessly Madhevere for an excellent innings of 73 off 72 balls.

He hit powerfully to record a six and 11 fours, and he certainly did his part to give his team an excellent start.

Tarisai Musakanda joined Masvaure and the pair kept the momentum going, adding 52 in nine overs before Takodza bowled Masvaure for 61, scored off 82 balls.

Musakanda was the third man to go at 185, caught off Takodza for 34 off 37 balls, and from this point onwards the innings began to lose its way.

Ryan Burl took 28 balls to score 14 before being caught off Brighton Zhawi.

Then began a procession of wickets at one end, as one batsman followed another back to the changing room without one of them staying long enough to reach double figures.

Johnathan Campbell did a fine job to hold up one end from No 5, scoring 33 not out from 28 balls, but he needed an equally capable partner for Rhinos to keep their advantage, and this he never found.

Tapiwa Mufudza did most of the damage at this stage, taking three wickets at a small cost as the batters tried unsuccessfully to get hold of his off-breaks.

The last eight Rhinos wickets actually fell in just over 12 overs for 76 runs, and the team was bowled out for 261 in the 48th over.

Eagles for their part had done very well to bowl themselves back into the game when they looked likely to concede 300 or more runs.

Mufudza finished with figures of three for 38 in 9.4 overs, while Takodza also took three wickets, these for 55 runs.

Eagles began their reply with all confidence of being able to chase down their target with time to spare.

Tinashe Kamunhukamwe played some dashing strokes, being particularly severe on the bowling of Carl Mumba, whom he hit for two fours and a six in four balls.

It was good to see the wholehearted Mike Chinouya back and bowling for Rhinos again, but his first spell of four overs cost 28 runs.

Eagles lost Gareth Chirawu lbw to Manson Chikowero for 13 with the score on 53 in the 10th over, but Kamunhukamwe and Kudzai Maunze continued to flog the bowling until Kamunhukamwe was caught off Brandon Mavuta for 62 off only 52 balls.

He hit three sixes and nine fours, and the score was 122 for two in the 18th over.

There was trouble in Mavuta’s next over, as he had Madhevere caught for three, going for a big hit, and off the next delivery bowled Maunze for 44.

Suddenly Eagles found themselves at 127 for four wickets in the 20th over.

They had the right men for the job though in Mutombodzi and Takodza, as the pair settled in and took command of the bowling.

Takodza was more aggressive than his more experienced partner, reaching his fifty first and then hammering one boundary after another as Eagles closed in on their target.

He finished with an unbeaten 76 off 71 balls, with 11 fours, but the honour of scoring the winning runs went to Mutombodzi, who hit Campbell for six to take Eagles home and at the same time bring up his own score to 52, made from 67 balls with two sixes and two fours.

The pair had put on 139 runs in 22 overs, and won the match with almost eight overs to spare.

Mavuta’s three quick wickets gave him the best bowling figures, three for 62 off his 10 overs, but Chikowero was the most economical, taking one for 37 in eight overs.

2021/22 PRO50 CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS TABLE

  • TEAM
  • Rocks
  • Mountaineers
  • Eagles
  • Tuskers
  • *Rhinos
  • M
  • 7
  • 5
  • 5
  • 6
  • 5
  • W
  • 6
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • 0
  • L
  • 0
  • 2
  • 2
  • 4
  • 5
  • T
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • D
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • 0
  • N/R
  • 1
  • 0
  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
  • PT
  • 65
  • 30
  • 25
  • 20
  • -3
  • NRR
  • 0.453
  • 1.440
  • 0.864
  • -0.842
  • -1.639