Zim Afro T10 Day 7 Review: Buffaloes secure play-off spot


The Joburg Buffaloes completed a huge turn-around as they secured a play-off spot in the inaugural Zim Afro T10 tournament. The Buffaloes who were languishing at the bottom of the table for the vast majority of the tournament, picked form at the right time as they finished second on the overall log-standings.

The huge nine wicket victory, this time over the Harare Hurricanes, had a huge positive impact on their overall net run rate leapfrogging the Samp Army and Hurricanes who were also sitting on eight points.

Stand-in captain for the Hurricanes, Robin Uthappa won the toss and elected to bat first. The Buffaloes bowlers in top form restricted the Hurricanes for the lowest total in the tournament—81.

Skipper Mohammad Hafeez, promoting himself to open the bowling, bowled the dangerous Evan Lewis for one. He then had Regis Chakabva caught out at deep midwicket by Noor Ahmed. Noor Ahmed was also vital with ball in hand removing compatriot Mohammad Nabi and Luke Jongwe in consecutive balls.

The Chevron seam bowling pair of Victor Nyauchi and Blessing Muzarabani chipped in with one wicket-a-piece. The Hurricanes struggled as they finished their innings on 81 for the loss of seven wickets. Mohammad Nabi top scored with 19. Noor Ahmad walked out with the best bowling figures of 2-7.
The Buffaloes made light work of the chase, chasing it down in 6.2 overs. The only blemish was the loss of Mohammad Hafeez to the bowling of Shanthakumaran Sreesanth. There were no problems for Tom Banton and William Smeed who both finished unbeaten. Smeed was the more aggressive of the two scoring 44 off just 19 balls in a boundary laden knock comprising of 5 fours and three sixes. Tom Banton on the other hand finished on 28 off 14 balls. With this win the Buffaloes joined the Durban Qalandars, Cape Town Samp Army and Harare Hurricanes in the play-offs.

The Bulawayo Braves were knocked out as they lost to the Durban Qalandars by seven runs. The Qalandars secured top spot in the process. Tasked to defend twelve off the last over against Sikandar Raza and Thisara Perera, Tendai Chatara bowled brilliantly to concede only 4 runs and getting two wickets to secure a close win for the Qalandars.

This summed up a player of the match performance as he had also had the dangerous Beau Webster who had scored 40 off just 21 balls caught out of his bowling. Chatara finished with figures of 3-9 in his two overs. Brad Evans was also pivotal in Qalandars bowling unit also conceding 9 runs in his two overs and getting two wickets. The economical bowling from the Qalandars strangled the Braves as what seemed to be a modest chase of 104 became an arduous one.

The Qalandars top order also struggled against the ferocious pace bowling of Taskin Ahmed and Tanaka Chivanga. Ahmed took the big wicket of Seifert for nought and followed it up with wickets of “The Spiceman” Andre Fletcher (6) and Hazratullah Zarzai (5) as he got figures of 3-19. Tanaka Chivanga bowled Craig Ervine for a two ball duck.

Asif Ali and George Linde restored some respectability to the score with scores of 32 and 28 respectively as they ensured the Qalandars cross the 100 run mark which proved more than enough for the win.

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