Masakadza brothers rescue Mountaineers after rocky start

Southern Rocks – 292 and 36-1 in 9 overs (Innocent Kaia 20, Brian Mudzinganyama 13*, Patrick Mambo 3*; Victor Nyauchi 1/23). Mountaineers – 211 all out in 66 overs (Tony Munyonga 58, Wellington Masakadza 54, Shingi Masakadza 50; Travor Mutsamba 4/60, Andre Odendaal 2/27, Tendai Chisoro 2/44). Day 2 – Stumps: Rocks lead by 117 runs

Some fine pace bowling by Travor Mutsamba of Southern Rocks set back Mountaineers in their Logan Cup match at Harare Sports Club on Wednesday and put them in a superior position at the close of the second day’s play.

In the morning, Mountaineers resumed their first innings at 272 for nine wickets, with Andre Odendaal on five and their last man, Mutsamba, having just come in.

Mutsamba looked fairly comfortable, so Odendaal took a couple of overs getting his eye in, and then began to open up, pulling short balls from Donald Tiripano for four and six.

He looked to do the same to Victor Nyauchi, but, looking to run a quick leg-bye at an lbw appeal, he was run out for 19 by a direct hit on the stumps from Timycen Maruma. Rocks were all out for 292, with Mutsamba not out on four.

Vincent Masekesa was the most successful bowler with three wickets for 71 runs, while there were two each for Nyauchi and Wellington Masakadza.

The two Rocks batsmen now opened the bowling together when Mountaineers went in. Mountaineers opened their innings with Joylord Gumbie and Gary Chirimuuta, but without a run on the board Chirimuuta played a loose stroke to a ball from Odendaal, left-arm over the wicket, outside his off stump and was caught by the wicket-keeper, Tafadzwa Tsiga.

Then Gumbie slashed at a ball from Mutsamba and was caught in the slips by Richmond Mutumbami, and Mountaineers had made a nightmare start by losing both openers without a run on the board.

Worse was to come, as Dion Myers was also given out caught at the wicket in Odendaal’s next over; three wickets down for no runs within four overs. Runs finally appeared on the board when Maruma drove a ball from Mutsamba through extra cover for four.

Maruma scored all the first 16 runs on the board, taking 12 in an over from Mutsamba, before Tony Munyonga nudged a single, the first run to be scored off Odendaal.

Just as the situation seemed to be normalising, Maruma was forced to retire hurt, as a shoulder injury prevented him from using his bat properly – he had scored 18 out of 26 on the board.

Shingi Masakadza joined Munyonga, and runs began to come more freely as the bowlers tired. Shingi took every opportunity to attack the bowling, scoring 20 off 26 balls by lunch, when Munyonga was 14 not out and the total 52 for three.

After lunch, Munyonga kept up his end while Shingi attacked the bowling. At one stage he had scored 37 of the 70 runs on the board.

Unable to break the stand, Rocks grew frustrated and their pace bowlers Patrick Mambo and William Mashinge bowled an excessive number of bouncers at the batsmen, which slowed down Shingi’s progress.

Shingi reached his fifty off 63 balls, but without adding another run he was bowled by a good ball from Mutsamba, which made the score 94 for four wickets.

Two overs later he produced another that shattered the stumps of Donald Tiripano (1), and two balls later trapped Clive Chitumba lbw without scoring; the score was now 96 for six, and Mountaineers were in trouble again.

Munyonga now began to play a more positive role, working the ball skilfully around the field and scoring boundaries off the loose deliveries. He reached his fifty off 131 balls just before tea, when the score was 130 for six wickets; Munyonga had 51 and Wellington Masakadza eight.

Thirteen runs were still needed to save the possibility of a follow-on. Munyonga saw Mountaineers safely just beyond that before he was caught at the wicket off Mashinge for 58; 143 for seven.

Maruma now returned to partner Wellington, but he was quite unable to attack the bowling with his injured shoulder, and eventually retired hurt again without adding to his 18.

Joined by Victor Nyauchi, Wellington began to play some more aggressive strokes, in particular a beautifully timed straight drive off Roy Kaia for six. He reached an excellent fifty off 79 balls, but was then dismissed lbw by Tendai Chisoro for 54; 195 for eight.

Nyauchi played another feisty innings, slogging Mutsamba for three fours in an over, but Masekesa was caught at the wicket off Chisoro for one and, with Maruma unable to come in again, the innings closed for 211.

Rocks went in a second time with a first-innings lead of 81. Innocent Kaia was in confident and cracking form from the start, as he drove the first two deliveries he faced, from Donald Tiripano, for four on the off side.

Brian Mudzinganyama also looked to attack the bowling, but Kaia swung right over a yorker from Nyauchi to be bowled for 20 off 21 balls; 29 for one.

Mambo was sent in as night-watchman, and at the close Rocks were 36 for one, with Mudzinganyama on 13 and Mambo three.

Tuskers – 114 and 115-8 in 39.1 overs (Luke JOngwe 32, Clive Madande 25, Ernest Masuku 12*; Richard Ngarava 4/38, Tinotenda Mutombodzi 1/6, Brad Evans 1/9). Eagles – 344 all out in 89.3 overs (Regis Chakabva 164, Faraz Akram 65, Rodney Mupfudza 24; John Nyumbu 4/76, Arnold Shara 2/35, Ainsley Ndlovu 2/90). Day 2 – Stumps: Tuskers trail by 115 runs

A magnificent century by Regis Chakabva took Eagles into a position of dominance over Tuskers at Old Hararians Sports Club on Wednesday.

Overnight he had scored 51 in a first-innings total of 165 for five wickets, with his partner Faraz Akram on 34. This morning the pair took their sixth-wicket partnership to 167 before Akram was finally caught and bowled by Ainsley Ndlovu for a fine supporting innings of 65.

Brad Evans, in next, scored 22 in a rousing partnership of 57 with Chakabva, but the tail did not last very long. Chakabva himself was the last man out for 164, scored off 186 balls with 17 fours and two sixes, the 16th century of his first-class career.

The Eagles total was 344, a lead of 230 runs over their opponents. Tuskers went in to bat again at a serious disadvantage, which was quickly made far worse as Richard Ngarava shattered their top order.

He dismissed Brian Chari lbw for 10, and then had Tanunurwa Makoni caught at the wicket by Chakabva for nine before bowling out Craig Ervine for seven.

With PJ Moor out lbw to Evans for two and Milton Shumba caught off Akram for one, the Tuskers innings was in tatters at 30 for five wickets. Luke Jongwe and their new wicket-keeper, Clive Madande, saved them from complete humiliation with a fighting stand of 57 for the sixth wicket before Madande was out for 25.

Ndlovu then stuck in to help Jongwe take the total past the 100 mark, before both were out at 103, Jongwe having made 32 and Ndlovu 11.

Close of play found Tuskers on the verge of an innings defeat: Ernest Masuku and John Nyumbu were not out with 12 and zero respectively, and with the score 115 for eight wickets, still 115 runs behind, doom seems certain early tomorrow morning.