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Eagles battle to catch up


Mashonaland Eagles were battling to stay in the match after finishing day two on 32-1 in their first innings trailing Matabeleland Tuskers by 307 runs at Queens Sports Club on Thursday.

Opener Prince Masvaure (17 not out) and skipper Forster Mutizwa who was also unbeaten on 14 runs at stumps on Thursday as they tried to reduce the huge deficit.

The pair had calmed the nerves a bit after aggressive batsman Cephas Zhuwawo was trapped lbw for nought off the first delivery of the innings by seamer Christopher Mpofu.

A seventh wicket partnership from wicketkeeper batsman Adam Wheater (90) and tail-ender Bradley Staddon (37) helped Tuskers post a competitive first innings total of 339 runs.

Wheater, who plays for Essex in the English County Championship, struck 12 fours and a six in his 124 ball knock to add to eclipse Terrence Duffin’s 79 on the first day.

His partnership with Staddon frustrated the Eagles bowlers and lasted 36 overs until it was broken when Zhuwawo had Staddon caught by Innocent Chinyoka.

However, despite not posting a huge score, Staddon had played a huge supporting role to Wheater in the partnership as his 37 runs came from a massive 110 runs.

Their partnership helped Tuskers add 151 runs to their overnight total of 188 for four to a first innings total which will certainly test an Eagles side that is yet to register a win this season.

The Eagles bowlers however found it easy after they broke the partnership as Tuskers lost their last four wickets for 41 runs as Chinyoka and Zhuwawo combined to finish off the tail.

Seamers Chad Keegan and Chinyoka and leg spinner Cephas Zhuwawo were the pick of the bowlers for Eagles as they picked three wickets apiece.

Andrew Hall also claimed a wicket after he clean-bowled Keith Dabengwa for 45 runs.

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