Third One-Day International

Zimbabwe v Sri Lanka

Special Correspondent

At Harare, April 25, 2004. Sri Lanka won by nine wickets. Toss: Sri Lanka. One-day international debuts: H. M. R. K. B. Herath, M. F. Maharoof.

On a pitch with a grassier surface than usual, Zimbabwe's youngsters suffered the ultimate humiliation: bowled out for 35, one below the previous worst in a one-day international (set by Canada against Sri Lanka in the 2003 World Cup), and three below their own 38, also against Sri Lanka, at Colombo in 2001-02. Ironically, an opening stand of five was their best of the series to date. The second wicket fell at 18, when Ebrahim was caught behind for seven, which was to be Zimbabwe's joint top score - along with Extras. The seamers found life and movement in the pitch: Vaas picked up four for 11, which made him the sixth to achieve 300 one-day international wickets, and Maharoof ended the innings with two in three balls, both caught behind. To their credit, Zimbabwe threw everything into their bowling and fielding, and managed to remove Arnold before the inevitable end came 70 minutes before lunch. Jayantha hit a four and six off successive balls to bring this mismatch to an end in 27.2 overs.

Man of the Match: W. P. U. J. C. Vaas.

© John Wisden & Co