Bowlers help Rocks clinch low-scorer
A combined bowling performance helped Southern Rocks defend a meagre 140 against Matabeleland Tuskers in the opening day of Zimbabwe's domestic season, in Masvingo. The Tuskers failed to put on decent partnerships and were struggling at one stage at 70 for 5, dented by strikes by Tinashe Panyangara and Trevor Garwe. A 42-run stand for the sixth wicket between Tawanda Mupariwa and Bradley Staddon helped the Tuskers recover, but timely strikes by the offspinner Roy Kaia brought Rocks back into the game. There was no fight left in the Tuskers and they folded for 129. Rocks, after being put in to bat, started steadily, moving to 80 for 2 before they too collapsed. Richard Mutumbami resisted with 45 but he and the rest succumbed to the seam duo of Mupariwa and Christopher Mpofu, who shared seven wickets between them.
In another low-scoring game, at the Harare Sports Club, Mashonaland Eagles chased 119 to beat Mid West Rhinos by three wickets. The Eagles were on track at 54 for 1 at the chase but lost their way when three wickets fell for 14 runs. Chamu Chibhabha held the chase together with a patient 43 off 110 balls before he was dismissed by Mkhululi Nyathi, with his side needing a further 21. Joylord Gumbie steered his side home with an unbeaten 25. After being put in to bat, the Rhinos never recovered properly from their top-order collapse. Most of the damage was done by the right-arm seamer Admire Manyumwa, who reduced the Rhinos to 37 for 6. Neville Madziva and Nyathi resisted to take the score past 100, but the Rhinos were bowled out with seven overs to spare.