July 11, 2000

Zimbabwe run spree

Guy Whittall
Guy Whittall
adequate and
enterprising substitute

Photo © CricInfo

Canterbury, interval: Zimbabwe 256/4; West Indies to bat

Zimbabwe continued their run spree at the expense of a very tired-looking West Indies team, totaling 256 for four in fine style off their 50 overs. Alistair Campbell confirmed his return to form with a fine unbeaten fifty, while Whittall also passed fifty in addition to Johnson's earlier in the innings. Were it not for the presence of Lara in the side to bat, one would write off their situation as being virtually hopeless, so badly were they outclassed.

NatWest Series

Whittall ran to his fifty and continued to bat aggressively but judiciously. Campbell, normally an elegant strokemaker, at times looked almost crude as he sought to slaughter the hapless West Indian bowlers, one stroke, an apparent skyer, containing enough power to clear long-on for six. Both batsmen hit several more uppish shots in the all-out effort for runs but none quite went to hand, apart from two very difficult chances that were not held. The 200 came up in the 42nd over and the West Indies were looking almost helpless to do anything about their steadily deteriorating situation.

Run riot continues - catches go down

Campbell reached his second successive fifty off 58 balls and at last seems to have regained his best form. Whittall was finally out to a fine catch by Hinds, over his shoulder running back at midwicket, for 83, equalling his highest one-day score. The bowler was Rose and the total 214 for three. Grant Flower (6) tried to push the score along before skying a catch to Sherwin Campbell at mid-on; 229 for four in the 27th over.

Another catch went down as the keeper could only parry a snick from Andy Flower, and the run riot continued to the end, West Indies being set 257 to win. Campbell finished on 77 and Flower on 7. If West Indies bat as poorly as they bowled and fielded, Zimbabwe will record a third victory with ease - or will it be one of those days when Lara shows his true greatness? If so, the best of Zimbabwe will not be sufficient.