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Chevrons face tour whitewash

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BY Kevin Mapasure
The Zimbabwe national cricket team is starring at the grim prospect of an embarrassing tour whitewash defeat at home against Afghanistan as the two teams square off for the third and final T-20 international at the Harare Sports Club this afternoon.

Zimbabwe were thrashed 3-0 in the Super League One Day International at the same venue before the T-20 series where there has been no respite for the Lalchand Rajput-coached side.

Despite putting up a good fight in the second match on Sunday, the home side still lost the tie by 21 run wickets as Afghanistan sealed a series win.

Today, Zimbabwe will be out to try and avoid the embarrassment of the tour whitewash as they prepare for the World Cup qualifiers in Bulawayo next month.

It has been a story of struggles with the bat for Zimbabwe which Rajput also lamented over with the batters getting the starts but failing to convert.

On Sunday, Sikandar Raza hit a quick fire 41 runs from 21 balls which gave Zimbabwe hope of levelling the series after the tourists had put up 170 for the loss of five wickets.

Innocent Kaia had laid the foundation with his half century where he used up 57 balls but at the end Zimbabwe needed 35 runs from the last 12 balls but they failed to get to the target.

They will, however, look at that performance and draw some inspiration as they go into the last match today.

The series has already been lost but there is everything to fight for with pride at stake as well as rankings points.

Captain Craig Ervine has struggled throughout the tour and he will look to finally lead from the front having been dismissed for two runs on Sunday.

Rajput has not been sparred of the criticism by the fans especially on social media platforms even though he has chosen to pass on the blame to the players.

In an interview with NewsDay Sport last week, Rajput said he always does what is expected of him to prepare the team, but the players fail come game time.

He will be hoping that the top order can click to lay the platform for the middle order batters.

  • Follow Kevin on Twitter@kevinmapasure

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