One-day internationals (3): Zimbabwe 2, Ireland 1
This was Ireland's first three-match one-day series against a Test-playing nation for five years - and all the games were close, proving there was little between the teams. Zimbabwe's victory meant they swapped places with Ireland in the ICC's one-day rankings, moving back up to tenth, but the tourists' success in the final ensured the result was the same as on their previous visit, in September 2010.
Zimbabwe were fresh from a series against Pakistan, as well as recent flying visits from India and New Zealand, while Ireland had played just two one-day internationals (one of them rain-ruined) since the World Cup in March. And being match-fit certainly helped: Craig Ervine, who had made his maiden century against New Zealand in August, scored another - the only hundred in the three games - while Sikandar Raza was named Player of the Series, after marrying 143 runs to three wickets the only time he bowled.
The team winning the toss won all three matches after choosing to bowl. Ireland were too reliant on Gary Wilson and Paul Stirling for their runs, and hamstrung when their spinners proved ineffective on slow, dry pitches. They had turned down the chance of a tri-series, also involving Afghanistan, preferring to prepare for their Intercontinental Cup match in Namibia. With that in mind they stayed in Harare for a four-day game against Zimbabwe A, in which Stuart Poynter - kept on only after an injury to Max Sorensen - scored his maiden first-class century.
Match reports for