Zimbabwe A v Afghanistan, Harare, 2nd day August 3, 2014

Zimbabwe A level series after wicket fest

ESPNcricinfo staff

Zimbabwe A 157 (Mutumbami 44, Sharafuddin 5-33) and 112 for 2 (Vermeulen 47*) beat Afghanistan 169 and 99 (M'shangwe 4-20) by eight wickets

Zimbabwe A's bowlers gave the hosts a massive eight-wicket win against Afghanistan, despite conceding a first-innings lead, and levelled the two-match series 1-1 on the second day which saw the fall of 20 wickets. After being dismissed for 157, Zimbabwe skittled Afghanistan for 99 in the second innings and chased down 112 within 25 overs at the cost of only two wickets.

The hosts were set to take a lead, resuming the second day on 113 for 2, but Mark Vermeulen was dismissed on the first ball of the day and they lost their remaining seven wickets for 27 runs as Sharafuddin Ashraf picked up five wickets on his first-class debut.

Afghanistan took a slim 12-run lead but could not capitalise on that as the Zimbabwe bowlers did not allow any partnership to flourish. Only four of Afghanistan's batsmen reached double-figures and legspinner Natsai M'shangwe's 4 for 20 meant the visitors were restricted to 99.

Zimbabwe's chase was led by Tino Mawoyo's 38 and an unbeaten 47 from Vermeulen, who wrapped up the win with a boundary.

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  • Dummy4 on August 5, 2014, 14:13 GMT

    Very upset with AFG performance.

  • ZCF on August 4, 2014, 9:08 GMT

    Vusi's form back then in 2009and following seasons was when he was batting at #4.

  • Andrew on August 4, 2014, 7:58 GMT

    Afghan friends: Thanks for coming - you did very well to draw the series 4-4 with a test team in their own back yard. Unlike some of the other associates, you rely on home-grown talent and have impressive youngsters coming through. I hope we play more in the future.

    @ZCF: If only we could see a Vusi in fine form against SA! I wish he would recapture his form of circa 2009, where he scored 9 first class centuries. As I said, he and Tino were doing quite well as an opening pair. as for Vermeulen - indeed, he could very well get a pair against SA. I really hope nobody gets a pair but I am worried that we will be totally thumped by the number one test team.

    Tahir - yes, he is a better one day bowler. BUT - Zim has been known to make ordinary bowlers look excellent with stupid batting displays. I just really hope Zim fight like they did against Ajmal and Khan all those Pakistan bowlers in the two series we played.

  • Dummy4 on August 4, 2014, 6:04 GMT

    afghanistan should have picked noor ali zadran & asghar stanikzai for the 4 day matches and gone with the young afghanistan a team with only noor ali & stanikzai being the seniors

    bowling was impressive for both teams, but batting needs some work for both teams. only rahmat shah looked like having the ability to bat long for afghanistan, but he got out around 25-30 instead of converting that into a 70-80+ score

    najibullah zadran played a good counter attacking knock in the 1st "test", i remember him hitting a 30 ball 80 in a match in 2012 when afg u-19 beat afg national team. he has the talent, but needs to convert that into big scores in odis

  • Dummy4 on August 4, 2014, 5:36 GMT

    @ Zimbabwean friends: As an Afghan fan, I would like to thank you all for your nice and encouraging comments about Afghanistan,s team.Also , on behalf of all Afghan fans, I would like to thank Zim cricket board for hosting Afghanistan.. To be frank, the way both the teams batted in the match was a shame! no batsman from both the team proved himself as stable test player.but the bowlers did a very good job from both the teams.

    About the test with SA, I would say , it is going to be a very big challenge for SA batsmen considering their form and specially weakness in playing pace balers. But I still wish Zim all the best...

  • Dummy4 on August 4, 2014, 4:29 GMT

    Honestly Afghanistan Selection Committee have put a T20 side in a 4 day match. There were players required to stay at the pitch and score slowly rather than hitting boundries and scoring at a run a ball or with a strike rate of 75 - 90.

    They should have played aggressive cricket in one dayers too. First option was losing the series but Afghans should have gone hard at Zim to win one of the first two one dayers to result in winning the series but they didn't try.

    Lets hope for a well selected and aggressive playing Afghan team in future.

  • Dummy4 on August 4, 2014, 4:11 GMT

    Afghanistan played outstanding compare to Zimbabwe

    Practice 50 over Series Zimbabwe 1-1 Afghanistan ODI Series Zimbabwe 2-2 Afghanistan Unofficial Test Series Zimbabwe 1-1 Afghanistan

    Thanks from Zimbabwe board as well

  • ZCF on August 3, 2014, 19:06 GMT

    Yes they were full ODIs. Minor oversight on my part. If there's one thing this Afghanistan tour proved to reserve bats it's that Vusi belongs in the Test XI. It would be foolish to include Elton on batting alone plus Mutumbami (to keep instead of Taylor) both ahead of Vusi. As a batsman he's a class above so he must be in without fail. Just as easily as Vermeulen has taken to substandard Afghanistan attacks, he can get a king pair against SA. Let's not kid ourselves, he's much older now but as for him being better than Vusi as a batsman - that he is not. Surely I'm not the only one who looks forward to seeing Vusi hook&pull Morne, while driving Steyn effortlessly.

    Tahir a poor spinner who poses a threat to noone at this level so I wouldn't worry about him. Duminy presents a greater challenge though so ZIM should watch out for him. I suspect Vitori is injured. If he's not then zero match fitness means only demented selectors would throw him in. Hope Shingi makes the most of the chance.

  • Andrew on August 3, 2014, 18:36 GMT

    @ZCFOutkast: I like how you are trying to wish away the fact that those were FULL ODIs which Zim lost by calling them "list A" games. But sure, Afghanistan does have some impressive depth and Zim should be playing them and Ireland regularly.

    Zim A was lucky that they got the best of the batting conditions - being the final session on each day, and their collapse in the morning was pathetic. But good on them for bouncing back and winning emphatically.

    As for the SA test. We will be lucky not to be bowled out for under 100 if we are asked to bat first, although I do hope that the boys can lift their game. Not sure that Vusi should get a spot given his form and record, although a couple of years ago he and Tino had some good partnerships. I hope Tino can guts it out against the SA quicks and the likes of Imran Tahir like he did against Said Ajmal and co a few years ago.

    I also wonder why Brian Vitori has not been playing? Is he off form or are they saving him up for SA?

  • ZCF on August 3, 2014, 18:00 GMT

    Zimbabwe should have won both games easily but this is some kind of consolation considering the embarrasing List A losses and the first 4 day game. Afghanistan have done themselves proud. This has shown that they have some promising depth about them. Surely they must get Test status sooner rather than later. Same applies to Ireland.

    Zimbabwe now turn their attention to the Proteas. Williams will have to bowl his heart out as the frontline spinner. Utseya can be sacrificed for batting depth in this one. Chigumbura&Hami will also play their part as the fourth seamer. The advantage of course is that I don't see the 8 batsmen being rolled over twice cheaply.

    Mawoyo, Vermeulen, Vusi, Hami, Taylor(c), Williams, Chigumbura, Mutumbami(wk), Panyangara, Shingi, Chatara.

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