ZIMBABWE national cricket team captain Graeme Cremer yesterday revealed that his team never lost belief of winning against Afghanistan at any stage of the match, even though they had put up a below par score of 197 in their group B showdown at Queens Sports Club yesterday.
BY KEVIN MAPASURE IN BULAWAYO
Zimbabwe rallied from an inferior position to bowl themselves closer to the Super Six stage of the tournament with a two run win over their rivals.
It was a nerve wrecking match but Zimbabwe held on to win the low score thriller.
“We have played them a lot and we knew that they can collapse even after scoring such a low total, “he said. “We kept saying to each other we need just one or two wickets to put them under pressure and the turning point was that Sikandar Raza over where he took three wickets. This was quite an awesome win for us and its such a special moment for us. We said to ourselves no matter the score, there is always pressure in matches like these ones. Their last partnership was almost taking the game away from us, but the finishing from Brian Vitori was brilliant he had told me earlier that he was feeling a bit of pressure, but he delivered a good performance,” Cremer said.
He said despite losing to Afghanistan 4-1 in the last series, they still had the confidence of winning this one in front of their home crowd.
Afghanistan’s chances of qualifying took a knock and they will need other teams to do the job for them.
Man of the match Raza echoed his captain’s sentiments saying the team always believe they can defend any total.
“We back each other no matter the score we always believe we can defend it. We said that we wanted a perfect run ahead of the Super Six and we are so happy with this win.
This tournament means a lot to us, our careers and the fans who are backing us.” In this match the team that panicked first was always going to lose and Afghanistan panicked and we took advantage. We are happy that despite the low total we did not panic.”
Afghanistan skipper, Rashid Khan blamed his batsmen for giving away cheap wickets.
“Ït was a bad day for us, we bowled well to restrict them to 197, but in the end we didn’t play well. We had too many easy wickets falling and we failed to finish it off. However, all is not lost we can still make it to the super Six stage and every match is a final for us.”