Northerns conquer Southerns in first regional T20 clash
Southerns – 168-8 in 20 overs (Clive Madande 55, Tino Mutombodzi 36, Richmond Mutumbami 31; Brad Evans 3/27, Victor Nyauchi 2/34, Tendai Chatara 2/47)
Northerns – 171-4 in 18.3 overs (Tadiwanashe Marumani 38, Milton Shumba 38, Kevin Kasuza 34; Wessly Madhevere 2/24, Brandon Mavuta 1/30, Luke Jongwe 1/38)
Northerns won by six wickets
Tadiwanashe Marumani and Kevin Kasuza shared a brilliant 76-run stand for the first wicket to give Northerns the impetus they needed to haul down a Southerns score of 168 in the first regional T20 match at Old Hararians Sports Club on Tuesday.
Southerns batted first on winning the toss, but were soon in trouble, as in the first four overs they lost their opening batters Takudzwanashe Kaitano for five and Bright Phiri for 11.
Wessly Madhevere could not get going and scored only a single off eight balls before he too was out, three different bowlers picking up the wickets.
Tino Mutombodzi and Clive Madande came to the rescue, with Mutombodzi especially hitting boldly to score 36 off 23 balls, with two sixes and three fours.
The biggest partnership, though, was between Madande and Richmond Mutumbami, who in six overs put on 71 for the fifth wicket before Brad Evans removed them both in the space of three balls, Mutumbami for 31 (16 balls) and Madande for 55 (41 balls).
Luke Jongwe scored 11 as the later batters hit out and the innings finished at 168 for eight.
Evans with three for 27 returned the best figures, while there were two wickets each for Tendai Chatara and Victor Nyauchi.
Ainsley Ndlovu, however, was the most economical bowler, with no wickets for only 21 runs off his four overs.
Northerns made a brilliant start to their reply, with Kasuza and Marumani blazing away at the bowlers from the start.
They put on 76 for the first wicket in only 7.2 overs before Marumani was out for 38 off 21 balls, with two sixes and five fours.
Timycen Maruma went for two, and then Kasuza was removed for 34 off 31 balls to make the score 113 for three in the 12th over.
However, they enjoyed another major partnership at exactly the right time, as Milton Shumba and Tony Munyonga made 53 together in six overs.
Shumba was bowled by Madhevere for 38 with only three runs needed, and Tafadzwa Tsiga came in to hit the winning four in the following over, the 19th.
Munyonga was unbeaten with 31 off 23 balls, and victory came quite comfortably in the end by six wickets with nine balls in hand.
Madhevere was both the most successful and the most economical bowler with two wickets for 24 in his four overs.
Northerns and Southerns will meet again in two more T20 matches scheduled for this Wednesday and Thursday at the same venue.