Eagles hold nerve in nail-biter
Ray Price and Mark Mbophana held their nerves in the last two over to guide Eagles to a narrow one-wicket win over Tuskers in the one-day competition in Harare. Ten runs were required off 10 balls when the last pair came together, but they went past Tuskers' score off 237 with two balls to spare. The foundation of the chase, however, was set up by useful contributions by the top order. Opener Regis Chakabva scored 41 in a slow start and was the second wicket to fall with the score on 100 in the 28th over after a 70-run stand with Sikandar Raza. Raza carried on and scored an attacking 73-ball 63 that helped raise the tempo of the chase. Tuskers' bowlers, though, kept chipping away with wickets to keep the game in the balance, but failed to get that one last wicket.
Eagles put Tuskers into bat and removed the openers cheaply, but Sean Ervine held one end together and shared a 92-run stand with Charles Coventry (34). Ervine was out six runs short of his century in the 44th over after which Glen Querl scored late runs to put up a competitive total. Mbofana and Kyle Jarvis were the pick of the bowlers, sharing three wickets each.
Rhinos' bowlers dished out a pasting to Mountaineers to set up an eight-wicket win and helped them move to the top of the table in Kwekwe. Mountaineers, put into bat, were immediately under pressure when they lost their opener Kevin Kasuza in the first over. The opening bowlers - Ed Rainsford and Michael Chinouya - shared two wickets each by the eighth over as Mountaineers were reduced to 10 for 4. There was a brief period of 8.4 overs where Mountaineers resisted, but wickets fell in a heap again as from 29 for 4, they went to 30 for 8. They were eventually bowled out for 66 in the 27th over, with Graeme Cremer picking up three wickets.
Rhinos didn't waste much time in the chase as they quickly completed the chase in the 13th over. Vusi Sibanda scored a quick 31 but was out eight runs short of the target.