The second false ending
There is a point towards the end of the Zimbabwe national anthem where the music tapers off and it appears to have run its course. Before the start of Zimbabwe's first match against Ireland, the crowd started clapping and cheering at what they thought was the end, only to be cut short as the anthem picked up rhythm again. They were lulled into making the same mistake this afternoon as well, their roar terminated prematurely as the anthem rebounded after the dip.
The brain fade I
With his side two down early and in need of rebuilding, Michael Swart pushed one close to the pitch and trotted out. The bowler, Tendai Chatara was on the ball in an instant. Swart did manage to stop and turn back slowly, but he was in an awkward position. He neither had enough momentum to dive in, nor was he close enough to stretch himself and plonk his bat in. He could only watch in disappointment as Chatara hit the stumps.
The brain fade II
Netherlands captain Peter Borren had made no secret of his frustration with his batsmen's successive, collective meltdowns in the warm-ups. What Borren did today was no less infuriating. With Netherlands in desperate need of sense at 35 for 3, he stepped out to Prosper Utseya, reached nowhere near the pitch of the ball but still went after it and only found mid-on. He walked away muttering, clearly frustrated again.
The failed promotion
Brendan Taylor had said after the Ireland defeat that there was a case for moving the aggressive Elton Chigumbura up the order to give him more deliveries to bat. Accordingly, Chigumbura walked in at No 4 in the 14th over, but lasted two balls. He defended his first delivery and slapped the second, a full and wide one, straight to extra cover.
The asking rate had reached ten by the end of the 16th over. Zimbabwe had wickets in hand, but they also needed someone to start hitting. Brendan Taylor stepped up. He first made room and powerfully lifted Logan van Beek over extra cover for four. Next ball was a slower bouncer outside off with third man up. Taylor waited, got on his toes and forced it past the fielder for four more.
Borren wasn't going down before giving Zimbabwe a flutter or two. In the 19th over, Taylor tried to loft Timm van der Gugten over extra cover. He would have thought he had cleared Borren in the circle, but the Netherlands captain jumped, stretched his right hand over his head and pulled off a blinder of a catch.