Zim Cricket Domestic T20 Review - Eagles Complete the Double; and Here are the Season's Top Performers

 By Ashley Dube

The Alliance Health Eagles men’s team clinched the 2022 Domestic T20 trophy after beating rivals Mountaineers by two wickets in a nerve-wrecking final at Harare Sports Club on the 2nd of April. This followed the Eagles women’s team success two days prior, who also beat Mountaineers albeit in more convincing fashion as they won with seven wickets in hand.

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The men’s final was a pulsating, entertaining encounter as the Mountaineers, after batting first, were bowled out for 105 which is below par for T20 standards with most of their runs coming from extras. Their highest scoring batsman was Tendai Chatara, who is primarily a bowler. He scored 19 before falling to the bowling of Richard Ngarava.

Richard Ngarava had already caused trouble up front removing Peter Moor without troubling the scorers. Together with Brad Evans who finished with figures of 2-14 from his quota. Wickets were shared all round the Eagles line up with Ngarava and Mufudza getting two as well, while Chivanga and Madhevere got one apiece.

It seemed a straight forward for the Eagles; however, they made a meal out of it as they lost wickets in quick succession with no significant partnerships.

Wessly Madhevere (32 off 34) and Matthew Welch (29 off 23) looked to have the match on lock, building a steady partnership as they edged closer to the target.

However, the two youngsters lost their wickets swinging the pendulum back into Mountaineers favour for a moment before Tapiwa Mufudza kept his cool and secured the winning runs.

On the overall, the Domestic T20 was characterized by relatively low T20 scores. This might be attributed with the kick-off times as after lunch at Harare Sports Club - the ball tends to keep low and is very difficult.

In preparation of the T20 Qualifiers the batters should put more focus on rotation of strike and punishing the bad balls in such conditions rather than to try and smash every ball out of the park.

Top Performers

Prince Masvaure was awarded best batsman as he scored the most runs in the tournament finishing with 154 runs at an average of 51.33 with a healthy strike rate of 119.38.

Victor Nyauchi was the best bowler as he led the way on the wickets charts with 11, two more than teammate John Masara. He had an impressive average throughout the tournament of 7.36 coupled with a healthy economy of 5.79.

Roy Kaia was named player of the tournament for his impressive and consistent all round performances.


Eagles Women   

The Alliance health Eagles women’s team finished top from the round-robin stage of the tournament following their four victories.

They were tied on points with the overall runners-up Mountaineers. However they possessed a superior net run rate.

The net run rate is a system used to break ties in multi-team cricket tournaments and is calculated by deducting from the average runs per over scored by a team throughout the tournament with the average runs per over scored against the team throughout the tournament.

This set up the final against the Mountaineeers in which the Eagles won comfortably by seven wickets with Kellis Ndlovu leading her side with a proper all round performance top scoring with the bat finishing unbeaten on 46. She also had chipped in with a wicket from the first innings.

The Top Performers included:

Kellis Ndlovu for the Eagles was the best batter with 197 runs at an average of 49.25 from seven innings.

Mary-Anne Musonda boasted the batting average of the tournament however of 56.33 from her 5 innings for the Rhinos.

On the bowling front Mitchell Mavunga who was playing for the eventual champions the Alliance health Eagles finished top with 15 scalps at an impressive economy of just under five an over.

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