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South Africa warmed up for a crowded summer with a quick and highly successful trip north of the Limpopo River. Their inaugural Test with Zimbabwe and two one-day internationals were all played at the picturesque Harare Sports Club before good crowds - an estimated 7,000 turned up on both the Saturday and Sunday of the Test, outstripping anything achieved before in Zimbabwe, outside one-day cricket. However, the visiting team was never seriously challenged.
Zimbabwe's great handicap, as captain Andy Flower was quick to acknowledge, is a shortage of competitive cricket, both at Test and first-class level. Despite Zimbabwe's unexpected win against Pakistan in February, the country's cricketers get most of their practice playing against each other in inter-district competitions.
The contrast between the sociable amateurism of the Zimbabweans and the professionalism of the South Africans, driven by their coach, Bob Woolmer, was apparent throughout. It was difficult to see how Zimbabwe could develop their game without extending their existing participation in South Africa's domestic competitions.
W. J. Cronje (Free State) (captain), D. J. Cullinan (Transvaal), P. S. De Villiers (Northern Transvaal), A. A. Donald (Free State), A. C. Hudson (Natal), G. Kirsten (Western Province), B. M. McMillan (Western Province), C. R. Matthews (Western Province), J. N. Rhodes (Natal), D. J. Richardson (Eastern Province), P. J. R. Steyn (Free State), P. L. Symcox (Natal).
B. N. Schultz (Eastern Province) joined the party as cover for De Villiers, who was injured. N. Boje (Free State), A. P. Kuiper (Western Province) and G. F. J. Liebenberg (Free State) joined for the one-day internationals.
Manager: Mustafa Khan. Coach: R. A. Woolmer.
Test Match - Played 1: Won 1.
One-day internationals - Played 2: Won 2.
Other non-first-class match - Won v Zimbabwe Country Districts.
Match reports for
Zimbabwe Country Districts v South Africans at Harare, Oct 19, 1995