Chakabva, Moor help Zimbabwe clinch weather-marred thriller

Regis Chakabva and Peter Moor led Zimbabwe’s charge in a stiff rain-affected chase as they beat United Arab Emirates by six wickets in the second ODI at the Harare Sports Club on Friday (April 12).

The duo shared an unbeaten 93-run stand off just 76 balls for the fifth wicket as badlight stopped play after 32 overs at which point the hosts were ahead by 4 runs. The game saw two rain breaks, one right after toss and a long break after 29 overs in UAE’s innings, forcing the officials to reduce the game to 35 overs per side.

Asked to bat first, the visitors were rocked early by Kyle Jarvis’ triple-strike as Ashfaq Ahmed, Rohan Mustafa, Muhammad Usman walked back for single digit scores to make it 12/3 in 6.5 overs. However, Ghulam Shabber and Shaiman Anwar resurrected the innings with a crucial 131-run stand for the fourth wicket. The former recorded his fourth ODI fifty, while the latter brought up his 11th in the process.

UAE lost 6 wickets for 26 runs post the rain break in their bid to accelerate the scoring. Their total of 169/9 in 35 overs was adjusted by DLS method and Zimbabwe were told to get 210 for victory.

The hosts got off to a sluggish start and lost Solomon Mire in the seventh over, but Chakabva dropped anchor and batted sensibly despite Craig Ervine, Sean Williams and Sikander Raza departing in quick succession and the scoreboard read 92 for 4 in 19.2 overs. This meant they needed 118 runs off 94 balls.

Moor joined Chakabva in the middle and eased the pressure on his partner by smashing 23 runs off 8 balls, starting with an assault against Imran Haider, who leaked 15 runs in his sixth over. The equation now was reduced to 49 runs needed off six overs.

The pressure increased on the hosts as light was fading and there was the possibility of the game being further curtailed as there are no floodlights installed at the ground. Zahoor Khan then bowled a four-run 30th over to spice things up, but Chakabva, who brought up his eked out a couple of boundaries in the next over, which yielded 14 runs for Zimbabwe and put them ahead of DLS par score.

The game was stopped after 32 overs due to poor light at which point Zimbabwe were narrowly ahead on DLS par by 4 runs and thus UAE lost a great opportunity for an upset victory. Peter Moor was named Player of the Match for his quickfire 33-ball 45. The two teams will meet again on Sunday for the third of the four ODIs with Zimbabwe already taking an unassailable 2-0 lead.

Brief scores: UAE 169 for 9 in 35 overs (Shaiman Anwar 72, Ghulam Shabber 56; Kyle Jarvis 4 for 16, Donald Tiripano 3 for 34) lost to Zimbabwe 185 for 4 in 32 overs (Regis Chakabva 78 not out, Peter Moor 45 not out; Rohan Mustafa 2 for 38) by 4 runs on DLS method. [Target 181 in 32 overs]

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