Domestic T20 Roundup: Durham through to the final, Tuskers still winless, Mountaineers edge Eagles


HARARE – Visiting English county side Durham are through to the final of the Domestic T20 after beating Midwest Rhinos in yet another rain interrupted match at Harare Sports Club.

Zimbabwe Domestic T20 Roundup Durham through to Final
Image: Zimbabwe Cricket 

Chasing 162 runs in 17 overs, Ryan Burl showcased a powerful performance, scoring 56 runs off 38 balls. Left-arm spinner Wallace Mubayiwa impressed with four wickets for 20 runs, yet these displays were not enough for Rhinos to overcome Durham's winning streak in the Domestic T20 Cup.

In a rain-affected contest at Harare Sports Club, the English county team secured victory by 31 runs in a match reduced to 17 overs per side due to a delayed start. With this win, the tourists secured a spot in the tournament final set to take place at the same venue on Saturday.

Durham started their batting with notable aggression, maintaining a pace of around seven runs per over before accelerating, albeit losing wickets steadily. 

Despite contributions from players like Alex Lees (24) and Bas de Leede (22), Mubayiwa's exceptional bowling saw him claim four wickets in three consecutive overs, with Durham losing their seventh wicket at 118 in the 14th over.

Paul Coughlin played a pivotal role, smashing 47 runs off just 21 balls, including a six and five fours, propelling Durham to a total of 161 for seven wickets—a target too high for Rhinos to chase.

Rhinos struggled early on, losing Takudzwanaishe Kaitano to Callum Parkinson's bowling on the third ball of the innings. Despite Burl's strong form, only Prince Masvaure (14) and Tashinga Musekiwa (12) provided significant support.

Neville Madziva joined Burl at 63 for five, contributing 60 runs in a seven-over partnership. However, his individual contribution was limited to eight runs off 17 balls, with Burl eventually caught off Oliver Gibson at 123 for six.

With 40 runs needed off the final eight deliveries, the task proved insurmountable, and Rhinos finished at 130 for seven wickets. Parkinson and Gibson each claimed two wickets.

Durham now lead the table with 10 points from four matches, earning them a spot in the final, while Rhinos hold onto second place with five points.

Mountaineers beat Eagles in a 383 run-fest

Excellent fifties from Tadiwanashe Marumani for Eagles and Brian Bennett for Mega Market Mountaineers stole the show in a high-scoring opening match at Old Hararians Sports Club on Thursday. 

The match culminated in Mega Market Mountaineers successfully chasing down a target of 191 to clinch victory in this thrilling Domestic T20 Cup encounter by four wickets with nine balls remaining.

Beginning their innings after being put in to bat, Eagles received a solid start from Craig Ervine (18) and Matthew Welch (30), who established a strong foundation with a 41-run opening partnership in five overs.

Marumani and Nick Welch continued the momentum, with the third wicket falling only at 142 in the 16th over.

Nick Welch contributed 40 runs off 30 balls, while Marumani's blistering 64 runs came off just 37 balls, including two sixes and seven fours.

As the innings progressed, wickets fell as the lower-order batsmen pushed for quick runs, resulting in a final total of 190 for six wickets, setting a challenging target for the Mountaineers.

Mountaineers' best bowler was Salman Mirza, who claimed two wickets for 30 runs.

Mountaineers faced an early setback with the loss of PJ Moor in the first over, but impressive performances from Joylord Gumbie (39) and Brian Bennett, who smashed a rapid 58 runs off 31 balls, with a boundary count matching Marumani's feat.

Despite a quickfire 31 from Tony Munyonga off 16 balls, Eagles seemed to have the upper hand when Munyonga departed at 150 for six in the 17th over.

However, Wellington Masakadza's 23 off 11 balls and Salman Mirza's 16 off 10 balls turned the tide, guiding their team to victory with an unbroken 41-run partnership in just 14 balls.

Rocks beat winless Tuskers 

Eddie Byrom once again spearheaded the charge with a splendid half-century as Southern Rocks handed Tuskers their fourth consecutive defeat, triumphing by three wickets in a tightly fought afternoon encounter at Old Hararians Sports Club.

Tuskers, batting first, suffered an early setback with Nkosana Mpofu's dismissal for one in the opening over. However, they showed promise briefly with a vibrant second-wicket partnership of 42 runs in four overs, led by Durham guest player Ben McKinney's aggressive 40 off just 17 balls, including three sixes and four fours.

The team's fortunes dwindled as Sean Williams failed to make an impact, departing for five. Brian Chari contributed 24 runs off 22 balls, Clive Madande added 24 off 17, and Milton Shumba posted 40 runs off 36 balls.

Jalat Khan impressed with his bowling, claiming three wickets for 24 runs, limiting Tuskers to a total of 158 for eight wickets.

In response, Southern Rocks lost Cephas Zhuwao without scoring, but Byrom's dynamic innings of 54 runs off 31 balls, featuring a six and eight fours, steered them towards victory. Roy Kaia chipped in with 27 runs, guiding Rocks past the 100-run mark with just two wickets down in the 11th over.

A flurry of wickets by Mpofu, who picked up three wickets in consecutive overs, brought the match back into balance at 115 for five, injecting suspense into the game.

Tendai Chisoro played a courageous innings, adding 23 runs, while William Mashinge played a composed role. Mashinge's crucial boundaries off Charlton Tshuma sealed victory for Rocks with three balls to spare.

Tshuma had earlier bowled impressively, claiming three wickets for 36 runs, while Mpofu finished with figures of three for 28.

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