Australia defeated Zimbabwe by 91 runs
On a placid track, Zimbabwe was successful in restricting the mighty Australia for only 262 for 6 victims in the allotted 50 overs.
Australia started their march with, the man in form of his life, Shane Watson and the wicket-keeper batsman Brad Haddin. Despite the class of Watson and Haddin, they could only manage a meagre 28 in the first 10 overs but importantly, without a wicket. Ray Price shared the new attack with Mpfou and maintained tidy line and length.
Zimbabwe struck gold in form of Haddin, through the first ever successful technology review (DRS) in CWC 2011, of the bowling of Utseya. After Haddin, next successful scalp, came through another DRS review, was in form of dangerous Watson who was sending the white leather to stands with his brutal power. Australia were restricted to 144 for 3 when a direct throw from Mpofu, who was alert in the outfield, claimed the captain Ricky Ponting. The responsibility to resurrect the innings came on the able shoulders of Clarke and White who managed a decent partnership till Mpofu uprooted White’s timber, resulted in scoreboard to read 207 for 4. Yellow brigade lost two more quick wickets after cameos from Hussey and Smith.
Zimbabwe openers had to face some music from, arguably the fastest pair in world cricket today, Lee and Tait. They came out early from the hiccups with Coventry creaming the ball over cover
point soon before Lee claimed his first victim of the innings, catching Coventry on his own bowling. Taylor started to build the innings before he was sent back and shortly followed by Taibu, who guided a seamy delivery to the slip cordon. Craig Ervine was caught napping to Johnson, which was eventually claimed through the help of another successful DRS of the game and Zimbabwe was tottering for 44 for the loss of 4 wickets in the second power play.
Williams was later claimed by Johnson after his decent stand with Chigumbura who was caught behind by the safe gloves of Haddin for 14 in the 22nd over and Williams’s wicket reducing the score to 96 for 6. The lone battle was further held by Utseya and Cremer to give some respect to the final total and Zimbabwe’s thanks giving happened at 171 with Australia registering their 30th consecutive
win in the world cup.
Overall, Zimbabwe put up a good show in bowling by restricting Australia to a fighting total, which could have been restricted further had they had a specialist 5th bowler, but couldn’t manage to see through with their limited batting resources. Johnson bowled some immaculate line and duly supported by the fire power of Tait and Lee. Shane Watson was aptly chosen man of the match for his knock of 79.
Australia would like to put the past back and regain momentum with this win and continue their unparalleled success in last three world cups and make a mark again.
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