Netherlands v Zimbabwe, World T20, Group B, Sylhet March 18, 2014

All or nothing for plucky Zimbabwe


Match facts

March 19, 2014, Sylhet Start time 1530 (0930GMT)

Big Picture

A player unhappy over non-selection, a public war of words, an investigation, a team's management scrambling to save face, a clearance, and a group of men responding on the field with a thumping victory to show none of the behind-the-scenes issues are affecting them too much. Sounds a lot like Zimbabwe, doesn't it? But it's not.

This was how Netherlands began their World T20 outing. By comparison, Zimbabwe's first few days at the event have been calm.

Brendan Taylor's men shook off months of inactivity by featuring in the match of the qualifiers so far. Their opener against Ireland went down to the last ball but they ended up on the wrong end of the result.

It's last-gasp time for Brendan Taylor and Co. Having recognised the importance of qualifying for the main draw and slipping up early, they have to win their next two matches and hope someone else (Ireland) stumbles along the way. Their fate may already be out of their hands, but Zimbabwe have a reputation to protect and, after the hurt of Monday, can be expected to be fierce in their attempts to do so.

Netherlands have already showed the fight of a wounded group. After losing their ODI status earlier this year and with the backroom drama, they turned in a clinical performance against the UAE to demonstrate the threat they could pose at this event. Victory over Zimbabwe will set up a showdown with Ireland, if they beat the UAE. Netherlands will want nothing less than to take it down to the final match of the group and to give themselves every chance of playing in the main draw.

Form guide

(completed matches, most recent first)

Zimbabwe LLLLW
Netherlands WWWLW

Watch out for

He does not have Tinashe Panyangara's obvious never-say-die attitude or his toe-crunching yorker but Tendai Chatara has determination of his own which serves Zimbabwe just as well. Chatara is miserly and gave away only 20 runs in the four overs he bowled against Ireland. He has also perfected the slower ball and can change his pace to suit conditions and fox batsmen.

Stephan Myburgh will feel right at home playing against Zimbabwe, because they used to be his neighbours. Myburgh was born in Pretoria and played some of his cricket for Northerns before moving to Netherlands. Myburgh has already made his presence felt in the tournament, with the only half century for his team so far, and will want to make an even bigger impact against the team South Africans think of as their little brothers.

Team news

Zimbabwe do not need to make drastic changes after a decent all-round showing against Ireland, but there are areas of their line-up they can tinker. Vusi Sibanda could be brought up to open the batting with Hamilton Masakadza, which may allow for Malcolm Waller to slot in at No.4. If Waller plays, Zimbabwe will have an extra spin option and could bring in big-hitting bowling allrounder Shingi Masakadza to bolster the lower order.

Zimbabwe: 1 Hamilton Masakadza 2 Sikandar Raza/Vusi Sibanda, 3 Brendan Taylor (cpt, wk), 4 Vusi Sibanda/Malcolm Waller, 5 Sean Williams, 6 Elton Chigumbura, 7 Timycen Maruma/Shingi Masakadza, 8 Prosper Utseya, 9 Tinashe Panyangara, 10 Tendai Chatara, 11 Tafadzwa Kamungozi

Netherlands may not want to tinker with a winning combination, especially one that earned such a comprehensive victory over UAE, but they may revise aspects of their seam department. Logan van Beek was expensive, which could see Vivian Kingma debut, although inexperience could count against him in a crucial match.

Netherlands: 1 Stephan Myburgh, 2 Michael Swart, 3 Wesley Barresi, 4 Tom Cooper, 5 Peter Borren, 6 Ben Cooper, 7 Logan van Beek, 8 Mudassar Bukhari, 9 Timm van der Gugten, 10 Pieter Seelaar, 11 Ahsan Malik


The international cricketing world got a first look at the Sylhet surface on Monday and it proved a typically Bangladeshi one. It was slow and took turn but there was also a little on offer for the seamers, especially as the afternoon wore on. Zimbabwe found some swing and Taylor said he felt as though his team was always in the match. It's expected to be a warm and humid day so there should be more of the same. As a result, batting is tricky to a newcomer at the crease but for those who get themselves in, there are runs to be found.

Stats and Trivia

  • Netherlands and Zimbabwe have never played a T20 international against each other before. The only Full Members Netherlands have played against are England, Pakistan and Bangladesh, twice. They have won two of the four games.

  • The Dutch also have a much higher winning percentage than Zimbabwe. Of the 23 matches Netherlands have played, they've won 13 (56.5%) while Zimbabwe have only won four out of 29 (13.8%).


    "They are all experienced players and have played enough cricket. It has to come from within themselves. I am pretty sure that they know what they need to do to improve."

    Brendan Taylor believes Zimbabwe's batsmen have what it takes to come back strongly

    "It's going to be a tough game against a team we haven't played very often. We can say that they have a varied attack and a dangerous batting line-up."

    Peter Borren is wary of the threat he thinks Zimbabwe will pose

    Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

  • Comments have now been closed for this article

    • Android on March 19, 2014, 9:23 GMT

      good luck to both team!!

    • Android on March 19, 2014, 8:51 GMT

      today zimbabwe have to perform better.

    • ZCF on March 19, 2014, 8:45 GMT

      It would be madness to drop Vusi for Malcolm Waller. Apart from the odd starts in the intenational matches he was undeservedly gifted a slot in to begin with, what form is Waller in? No 20+ score last 5 innings! Was embarassing in trials&warm up games, and allround had a pathetic domestic season last year. Forget selection in the XI, he should never even have made the squad plus had a shocker of a T20WC last time around. He's also the worst six hitter of anyone in the current squad including most of the bowlers. Mawoyo, Mutizwa&Kasuza deserved a batting slot ahead of him!

      Just bring in Vitori for Kamungozi and get Taylor to open with Raza. It's obvious the strategy is Raza must just slog. Taylor plays sensibly but for the amount of time he occupied the crease he really should have scored more. Same with Vusi, but he's more aggresive, and we were having a mini collapse when he came in so he went about things the right way. Just fell when it was time to unleash. Can happen to anyone.

    • Dummy4 on March 19, 2014, 7:43 GMT

      I'm sorry to say it, but I don't think Vusi Sibanda is a luxury Zimbabwe can continue to afford. His record is shocking. A top order batsman can not average less than 15 and continue to be selected, surely? I know Zim fans will say he's a classy player and yes he does play some fine shots, but his record in all forms is poor, really, barely even averaging 30 at first class level. When you put his record up against that of Hami Mazakadza and Brendan Taylor it makes for poor reading.

      On the match itself I think Zimbabwe are going to need to be at their best today. Guys like Van Der Gugten and Tom Cooper are equally as talented as their Zimbabwean counterparts and if they have big games could easily pull off a win for the Dutch. In fact I don't think the men in orange are out of the equation for qualifying for the next round. If only they had Nannes and Ryan TD!

      Loving this version of the WT20!

      @ZCF, Raina is a great IPL player, but at international level i'm not convinced.

    • Farai on March 19, 2014, 7:23 GMT

      @taone i completely agree with you. cricket will ever be a great sport because of the segregation and tier system. for it to grow, the world cup should be played by the 'world' especially the shorter formats.

      In football you get a small country play a big one. even if they get demolished, there is interest there. imagine some guy from nowhere getting to play alongside his hero. Imagine like this world cup someone from eg Nepal or Hong Kong playing alongside steyn, kohli, dhoni, malinga or afridi etc. then at the end you swap shirts and when they go home it will have been a great world cup. everyone will want a picture and the buzz will get going the icc need to understand this.

      Zim and England are both full members but guess how long it's been since the two played each other? i sometimes doubt the FTP. also Ireland should get full membership. they are not better than Bangladesh or Zim but good enough to get their chance...

    • Marius on March 19, 2014, 6:53 GMT

      My guess for the teams is: ZIM - 1 - H. Masakadza 2 - Raza 3 - Taylor (c, wk) 4 - Waller 5 - Williams 6 - Chigumbura 7 - S. Masakadza 8 - Utseya 9 - Panyangara 10 - Chatara 11 - Kamungozi Kamungozi hasn't been so bad as to deserve an immediate drop. And Sibanda seems to have played himself out of anything resembling form. NED - 1 - Myburgh 2 - Swart 3 - Barresi 4 - T. Cooper 5 - Borren 6 - B. Cooper 7 - van Beek 8 - Bukhari 9 - van der Gugten 10 - Seelaar 11 - Malik If it isn't broken, don't fix it. van Beek may have been expensive, but all including Kingma in ahead of him will do is shorten a batting lineup that already needs all the help it can get.

    • Android on March 19, 2014, 6:01 GMT

      Pakistan win this wc inshaSllah

    • Dummy4 on March 19, 2014, 4:48 GMT

      I do wish that the ACB and Academy would sponsor more players from countries like Nepal, Namibia, Afghanistan, Kenya etc and train them and nurture them along to build the sport in these countries, on the understanding that they would never poach any young player who won a scholarship.

    • Android on March 19, 2014, 4:10 GMT

      today,s match is most important for b.taylor..

    • Jawwad on March 19, 2014, 3:47 GMT

      So far all the matches have been close and gripping to say the least. Good luck to both Zimbabwe and Holland.

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