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Fifth bowler made the difference - Chigumbura

Solomon Mire struck his second fifty in three matches AFP

"We are sorry for your loss, Elton," shouted someone from the stands as the Zimbabwe captain walked from the dressing room to the Shere Bangla National Stadium's media centre. It is an acceptable comment from a crowd that has suffered its share of losses, and it was appreciated as Chigumbura waved at them.

Zimbabwe have now lost all seven international matches on this Bangladesh tour, and may have to play with their leftover mental and physical strength to prevent a double whitewash. Coming at the fag end of a six-week tour, that is also a big ask.

In the inquisition of their 21-run loss in the fourth ODI, Chigumbura said that the lack of penetration or control from the fifth bowler - comprising four bowlers - made them pay. Hamilton Masakadza, Vusi Sibanda, Chigumbura himself and Timycen Maruma gave away 67 runs for no wicket while the other four bowled appreciably well. In one-day matches, one of those four had to bowl much better to force a better result.

"Our fifth bowler did not manage to break the partnership," Chigumbura said. "We didn't manage to continue what we started with the first 10 overs. They had a big partnership. I thought if we could break the stand with another guy, it could have been a different story chasing a lower target.

"I thought the fifth bowler gave too many runs. He wasn't tight the way the openers bowled first up."

Chigumbura, however, said that he appreciated the efforts of the openers - both batsmen and bowlers. He said that along with the starts and the Brendan Taylor-Solomon Mire 106-run partnership, there is still some improvement they can make for the fifth ODI. Chigumbura was particularly pleased with Mire, who took three wickets and scored a feisty half-century.

"There are positives from this game if you compare to the other three games that we played," Chigumbura said. "Having a good start with the bat than before, having a good start with the ball again, the hundred-partnership between Taylor and Mireā€¦There is a lot that we can take and hopefully we can continue with the improvement into the last game.

"He [Solomon Mire] is a big bonus to the team, the way he plays. It is good to see him scoring more runs, hopefully he can finish off. He is going to play a big part in the World Cup. It is always a big boost to see one of your youngsters putting up his end, second time now in this series, in his fourth game. He has a brighter future, the way he is playing so far."

But Chigumbura rued the dismissals of Mire and Taylor at a crucial stage in the game, when Zimbabwe needed less than 100 runs to win and both batsmen were well set. But Mire gave a catch to cover and Taylor's cheeky shot found the edge for the wicketkeeper.

"It was a match-changing situation, where we lost two guys who were set just before the second Powerplay," Chigumbura said. "If we had at least one of them at the wicket, it would have made it easier for the guys coming in."

Chigumbura didn't explain why Tinashe Panyangara did not play, but there was finally a word on why Sikandar Raza had not played the last two games. "He has a problem with his finger, that's why. It was much better today," he said.