The inaugural day of Zim Afro T10 stays witness to Sikandar Raza’s carnage, a nail-biting thriller and a sizzling six-fer from Hafeez

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The curtain-raiser of Zim Afro T10 saw Bulawayo Braves steamrolling the Harare Hurricanes, thanks to a very special display from their skipper, Sikandar Raza. The Braves were put to bat after Eoin Morgan won the toss. Despite losing out their openers early, it was a very special showdown from Sikandar Raza who powered to a 30-ball-61 to propel Bulawayo to 128/9 at the end of 10 overs. Brandon Mavuta clinched three wickets for Harare while Nandre Burger and Tinotenda Maposa clinched a couple of wickets each.

 

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Chasing 129, the Hurricanes fell flat on their face as a surging start from the starry pace duo of Tasking Ahmed and Tymal Mills established the Braves in the driver’s seat. A late surge from the skipper, Sikandar Raza, clinching three crucial wickets put a curtain on the desperate attempts from the Hurricanes to try and get themselves back in the game. Raza was awarded the Player of the Match for his fine 60 and his bowling figures of 3 for 12, winning the game for his team almost single-handedly.

The second game witnessed another extraordinary showdown with the bat by the Durban Qalandars as two of their openers laid absolute waste to the bowlers of Cape Town Samp Army. Hazratullah Zazai and Tim Seifert set the stage ablaze with knocks of 38 (25) and 49 (22) respectively. Asif Ali’s late flourish allowed the Qalandars to post 126/3 from their ten overs. Mujeeb ur Rehman and Tom Curran were the pick of the lot for Samp Army with figures of 1/11 and 1/12 respectively.

 

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In a thrilling chase, Rahmanullah Gurbaz did fire off to a blinder but things took an expected turn for Cape Town as they lost wickets in quick succession. Teetering at 52/5, it was a phenomenal partnership between Karim Jannat and Parthiv Patel who added 66 runs for the 6th wicket, propelling Samp Army to a resilient showdown only to fall short of the finish line by 8 runs.

The final contest of the day saw Joburg Buffaloes struggling to rage past the Bulawayo Braves in their stunning fashion as Taskin Ahmed proved to be a significant name in the ranks, clinching three crucial wickets while his national teammate, Mushfiqur Rahman was the top-scorer for the Buffaloes with 46 from 23 balls. Tom Banton provided the Buffaloes with a feisty start smashing 34 from 18 balls that allowed them to pile up 105/7.

 

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Chasing 106, the Bulawayo Braves were in early trouble as the Buffaloes rode roughshod over their batting line-up, courtesy of a phenomenal display from Mohammad Hafeez who clinched a six-fer while Wellington Masakadza posted an equally brilliant display claiming a three-fer to help the Joburg Buffaloes land their first win of the tournament. Beau Webster was the lonely warrior for the Braves in the second innings, knitting a crucial knock of an unbeaten 39 under the pump.

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