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Elton Chigumbura lauds his team's effort in the galvanising victory over Pakistan

Ram Kumar
Modified 05 Oct 2015, 13:30 IST
Chigumbura was MoM in the second ODI match

Zimbabwe captain Elton Chigumbura hailed the performance of his team members which helped them level the series against Pakistan. ESPNcricinfo reported that the star all-rounder believed in the umpire’s decision to remove the players off the field, citing fading light.

Under acrimonious circumstances, Zimbabwe managed to hold on to secure a narrow 5-run victory over Pakistan. At that point, the visitors needed 21 from the remaining 2 overs. But, the fact that they had lost 8 wickets tilted the match in favour of the home team by the D/L method.

Chigumbura said, "The umpire couldn't see the ball, so he was telling the Pakistan batsmen that 'we are going off’. In the game of cricket, you can't relax until the very last ball. But there were a few chances that we didn't take when we were fielding, and that's why they ended up getting so close.They showed some good fight, and they didn't give up even when they'd lost six wickets early, which is cricket, and which is what you want from your team: to not give up. After the good start that we had with the ball, they were under pressure. We just had to maintain that."

Also the Man-of-the-Match, he broke a vital partnership between Shoaib Malik and Aamer Yamin who had threatened to snatch a miraculous victory for the tourists. But, this might not have happened if wrist-spinner Graeme Cremer had been twisted his ankle in the field.

The 29-year-old Chigumbura conceded, "Definitely, that pitch would have assisted Cremer big time. They had confidence that we were a bowler short and  Raza couldn't bowl as well because he'd been off the field for an hour or more. So, we just had to make use of the guys who were available to bowl. That's why it was almost like a blessing in disguise that I ended up bowling as well and getting that wicket. We went back on top again after that."

Even though the match ended amidst contentiously, Zimbabwe coach, Dav Whatmore reiterated that his team’s victory was still memorable. A visibly relieved man, he revealed, "Before the game started we had a lot of negativity towards us, and in some ways it was justified, in other ways I'm not sure. But, to turn it around in the way we did with the bat in that first half was just a fantastic effort given the situation that the boys were in at the start of the day. Losing the toss, being asked to bat, and to perform like that and get the score that we did was really heartening.”

He concluded by believing that the match had given plenty of positives to the team. The final match of the ODI series takes place on the 5th of October in Harare.

Published 05 Oct 2015, 08:45 IST
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