NPL T20 Blast: Welch's fireworks and Bennett's fifer power Uprising to massive win


Nicholas Welch was in sublime form as he smashed a 37-ball 68 to propel Uprising to a mammoth total of 213 for 4 against Rainbow in the NPL T20 Blast at Old Hararians Sports Club. 


Welch, who is now the leading run-scorer in the tournament with 179 runs at a strike rate of 179.00, shared a 92-run opening stand with Tariro Makauyo, who made a brisk 28 off 21 balls.

Welch's innings was studded with six fours and four sixes, as he took on the Rainbow bowlers with ease. 

He was eventually stumped off the bowling of Btandon Mavuta, who was the most economical bowler for Rainbow with figures of 1 for 24 in his four overs. 

However, there was no respite for Rainbow as Takudzwanaishe Kaitano came in and blasted a 26-ball 54, which included four fours and five sixes.

Rainbow's chase never got going as they lost wickets at regular intervals. Brian Bennett was the star performer for Uprising with the ball, as he claimed his maiden five-wicket haul in the NPL T20 Blast. He finished with figures of 5 for 18 in his four overs, which included two wickets in two balls. 

He dismissed Jonathan Campbell, who was the top scorer for Rainbow with 41 runs, and Patrick Nyamapfeni in successive deliveries.

Rainbow were eventually bowled out for 131 in 18.3 overs, handing Uprising a comprehensive 82-run victory.

Mawadzi's masterclass guides Westside to thrilling win over Gladiators

Definate Mawadzi played a sensational knock of 73 off just 47 balls to help Westside edge past Gladiators by seven runs in a nail-biting encounter in the NPL T20 Blast at Mutare Sports Club. 

Mawadzi's innings, which featured seven fours and four sixes, was the backbone of Westside's total of 180 for 5 in their allotted 20 overs.

Mawadzi received good support from Tinashe Muchawaya and Tinashe Chiorah, who scored 25 and 21 runs respectively. 

Gladiators' bowlers struggled to contain the onslaught from Westside's batsmen, as they conceded 13 boundaries and nine sixes in their innings.

Gladiators' chase got off to a solid start, as they reached 84 for 1 in the ninth over. Owen Muzondo and Tanatswa Chisvo were looking set to take their team home, as they added 64 runs for the second wicket. 

However, Fortune Mhlanga turned the game around for Westside with a double strike in the 18th over. He dismissed Muzondo for 46 and Chisvo for 39, leaving Gladiators needing 29 runs off the last two overs.

Westside's bowlers held their nerve in the final overs, as they gave away only one boundary and picked up two more wickets. Gladiators fell short of their target by seven runs, as they finished on 173 for 6.

Schadendorf and Welch shine as Mutare overcome Amakhosi

Jayden Schadendorf and Matthew Welch starred with the bat as Mutare registered a comfortable 13-run win over Amakhosi in the NPL T20 Blast at Masvingo Sports Club. 

Schadendorf scored a fluent half-century, while Welch played a cameo of 44 runs off just 24 balls to power Mutare to a competitive total of 165 for 6.

Schadendorf and Welch added 66 runs for the fourth wicket, after Mutare had lost three early wickets. Schadendorf scored his second fifty of the tournament, hitting six fours and a six in his innings of 52 runs. Welch was more aggressive, as he smashed eight fours and a six in his knock of 44 runs.

Amakhosi's chase started well, as they reached 67 for 1 in the eighth over. However, they lost momentum after losing three quick wickets. 

Tendai Chatara delivered a decisive blow to Amakhosi's hopes with a triple strike in the 17th over. He dismissed Simbarashe Gupo for 34, Tafadzwa Tsiga for a duck and Tapiwa Maruma for one run.

Amakhosi needed 32 runs off the last three overs, but could only manage to score 18 runs and lost two more wickets. They ended up on 152 for 9 in their allotted overs, giving Mutare a 13-run victory.

Naqvi's comeback knock helps Takashinga 2 topple Takashinga 1 

Antum Naqvi marked his return to Zimbabwe domestic cricket with a sparkling 65 off 37 balls, powering Takashinga Patriots 2 to an 18-run win over Takashinga Patriots 1 in a high-scoring NPL T20 Blast encounter at Takashinga Cricket Club.

Naqvi, who last played for Zimbabwe in 2020, smashed seven fours and three sixes in his innings, as he helped Takashinga 2 post a formidable 195 for 6 after being put in to bat. 

He shared a 72-run stand with Tinashe Kamunhukamwe, who made 38 off 25 balls, and added another 49 runs with Roy Kaia, who chipped in with 24 off 16 balls.

Takashinga 2's bowlers then backed up their batsmen's efforts, with left-arm seamer Richard Ngarava leading the way with figures of 3 for 11 in four overs. 

Ngarava removed both the openers, Tinashe Nenhunzi and Tadiwanashe Marumani, cheaply and also accounted for the dangerous Wesley Madhevere for 15. 

Takashinga 1 were reduced to 57 for 4 in the ninth over, before Innocent Kaia and Wellington Masakadza staged a fightback with a 97-run partnership for the fifth wicket. 

Kaia was the aggressor, blasting 71 off 41 balls with six fours and four sixes, while Masakadza played a supporting role with 43 off 34 balls.

However, their efforts were not enough to overhaul the target, as Takashinga 2 kept taking wickets at regular intervals. 

Tanaka Chivanga and Roy Kaia picked up two wickets each, while Tendai Chatara and Victor Nyauchi claimed one apiece.

Takashinga 1 eventually finished on 177 for 9 in their allotted 20 overs, falling short by 18 runs. 

This was the second time this season that Takashinga 2 had beaten their sister team, having also won the longer format match by an innings and 106 runs.

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