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Zimbabwe Lose First ODI To Afghanistan

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By Don Makanyanga

Harare, February 17, 2017 – ZIMBABWE senior men’s cricket team continued with its dismal performance, losing to a visiting Afghanistan side in the first One Day International match played at Harare Sports Club on Thursday. 

Zimbabwe lost by 12 runs after the application of the Duckworth–Lewis method (D/L) following light showers when the hosts been on the crease for 28 overs.

The Duckworth–Lewis method is a mathematical formulation designed to calculate the target score for the team batting second in a limited overs cricket match interrupted by weather or other circumstances.

It is generally accepted to be the most accurate method of setting a target score.

Zimbabwe was one run ahead before Ryan Burl was caught in front by Rashid Khan to give the visitors an advantage, with the heavens opening up soon after, leaving chances for a comeback for the hosts up in smoke.

Afghanistan won the toss and elected to bat posting a modest 215 all out from 49,2 overs at a run rate of 4.25 runs per over, a target which was too much for the hosts as they played at 3.62 runs per over.

Zimbabwe went into the match with two uncapped players, Ryan Burl and Richard Ngarava and the two debutants did not disappoint as they lived to expectations with the former emerging as the second highest run scorer for the hosts hitting 28 runs from 38 balls, while Ngarava claimed his first wicket in the senior team’s national colours.

Zimbabwe has played Afghanistan in three ODI series since July 2014 and is still to register a win against the Asians.

Zimbabwe drew the official series with the Asians 2-2 at home, before losing the second series 3-2, again at home before they went on to lose 3-2 in Sharjah in the third meeting.

The defeat came less than a week after Zimbabwe sports minister, Makhosini Hlongwane came out voicing his disapproval on the dire situation of Zimbabwe Cricket calling for drastic measures within the sport.

"Zimbabwe should work hard to improve its rankings among Test-playing nations and should move away from being the whipping boys of cricket,” Hlongwane was quoted as saying early this week.

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