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April 28, 2010
Zimbabwe have been given a timely confidence boost after their shock one-run win over Australia in their World Twenty20 warm-up match. Elton Chigumbura's boundary-laden 76 helped to set up the victory and raise morale in the Zimbabwe camp after they lost both of their games against West Indies A.
"It means a lot to us in terms of confidence," Chigumbura said. "Maybe it was only a practise match for Australia but we know they were trying their hardest and we could see that they did not enjoy losing.
"We need to believe that we are good enough to beat any team and this was a good reminder because results haven't been too good on tour so far."
Alan Butcher, in his first major outing as Zimbabwe's head coach, paid tribute to Chigumbura's game-changing innings, highlighting just how much the win meant to them ahead of two tough engagements against New Zealand and Sri Lanka, but insisting that it was a team effort that secured the match.
"It may not mean too much in the context of the tournament when it gets under way for real, but it means everything to us and to Zimbabwe cricket," he said. "Everyone played their part, and I really mean that, although Elton played the biggest part and deserves all the headlines and praise that he gets."
Mitchell Johnson, who picked up four wickets on either side of Chigumbura's explosive innings, expressed his side's disappointment at the loss to the lowly Zimbabweans, but insisted that it would not affect the team's performance in the tournament.
"Obviously we would have liked to have won," Johnson said. "When you come into these practice games you want to be pretty close to your best.
"It won't be a setback. It's disappointing to lose in a practice match but we've just got to keep going forward, keep working hard in our training sessions and make sure we're ready for the World Cup."
Australia will be hoping for a win in their final warm-up, against Windward Islands at Gros Islet on Thursday, while Zimbabwe's last practice match before the tournament begins is against Pakistan at the same venue.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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