ZIMBABWE – “I thought if we were defending 180 it would have made a big difference”.
Zimbabwe batsman Hamilton Masakadza has said that his bowlers needed a cushion of around 180 runs, instead of the 163 for 7 they ended up getting after batting first.
The combined efforts of an inexperienced bowling attack, led by the legspinner Graeme Cremer, almost snuck one past Bangladesh, who needed cameos from Shakib Al Hasan and Nurul Hasan to get over the line. Zimbabwe got Bangladesh down to six wickets, with 27 runs still left in the chase. However, two gigantic wides down the leg-side, bowled by Brian Vitori and Luke Jongwe, went for fours, tilting the game heavily in the hosts’ favour.
Masakadza felt that the batsmen could have scored a few more runs to make it easier for the bowlers. He said that the injured Tinashe Panyangara was missed, but that Zimbabwe wanted to move on with the young attack for the next three games.
“I think in the end you can look at little things like [the wides],” Masakadza said. “But I thought if we were defending 180 it would have made a big difference. So I thought it was more of the batting side than the bowling side.
“Obviously he [Tinashe Panyangara] is a big loss to us. He is one of the more experienced seamers that we have. There is a bit more responsibility on Graeme’s shoulders but we have to move on with what we have and look at the younger guys to come through for us.”
Masakadza and Vusi Sibanda added 101 runs, only Zimbabwe’s second century opening stand in T20s, and their highest so far. It was still going well till the end of the 16th over before the visitors imploded to give away five wickets for just 21 runs. While the lower order failed to fire, Masakadza, on his part, read the wicket early, going for his shots, encouraging Sibanda to do the same.
“I thought we missed out on 15-20 runs in the end. From the position we were looking at, at least 180. I thought it was quite a good wicket, the bounce was true and the ball was coming on nicely.
“I think the main thing is to keep making sure that I will do my part and whenever you get someone supporting we will get over the line. As long as we keep sticking together I am sure the result will come.”