I was approached by Wisden India to cover the Zimbabwe games with short articles and jumped onto the opportunity. This also means that I will now be watching all the games from start to finish, not that I needed any incentive! Looking forward to covering and hope this year we go to the quarter finals. I will update this post with all the articles. Unfortunately this call came after the game between Zimbabwe and South Africa so I was not able to write a piece about it.
The walkover that wasn’t
Zimbabwe vs United Arab Emirates (UAE)
We arrived at the World Cup with a set plan. Dav Whatmore, the new coach for the Zimbabwe team, said he had his eye on a quarterfinal slot. So we expected to beat Ireland, walk over the United Arab Emirates and then upset one of the Test-playing nations, with an eye on either West Indies or Pakistan. Read More
We are in it till the fat lady sings
Zimbabwe vs West Indies (WI)
In the run up to the match, the talk centred on Chris Gayle and his form and whether he could turn it around or not. Zimbabwe acknowledged that Gayle would be a concern, but Hamilton Masakadza, at a press conference, assured supporters: “We have our plans against him”. The big question was if things would go to plan.
Zimbabwe find the most painful way to lose
Zimbabwe vs Pakistan (PAK)
The Pakistan match was always going to be a 50-50 match as you never really know which Pakistan team will turn up. So far throughout the tournament, it had been the bad team and we in Zimbabwe were hopeful they would turn up against us as well. The last time we had met Pakistan, we had beaten them in the Test series so we were pretty confident that we had this. And sure enough, the bad Pakistan team turned up and we restricted them to 235.
Another World Cup of promises unfulfilled
Zimbabwe vs Ireland (IRE)
A victory for Ireland over Zimbabwe would not only get them into the quarterfinals but also send a message to the ICC that they deserve to be among the Test-playing nations. This was the background coming into a match that offered another interesting finish.
As usual, it’s not looking good in Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe vs India (IND)
The defeat to Ireland was the final straw for Zimbabwe fans. Going out of the World Cup in the group stages was always a big possibility regardless of the fact that Dav Whatmore had eyed a quarterfinal spot. I felt it was too lofty a goal with Whatmore having spent such a short time with the team. But after the South Africa game, we certainly started believing.
Despite the disappointing results, the scorecards were actually not that bad. We definitely let our selves down by not taking advantage of the winning positions we found ourselves in almost all of our games. It comes down to a mindset, and as soon as we had squabbles about who gets what at the airport before we even left the country, I knew we would not be mentally prepared to win when it counts. Until 2019…