Soon after the 27-year-old Mary-Anne Musonda was appointed as Zimbabwe’s captain, she said that having a winning attitude is what she expects from her teammates. Musonda, who replaced Chipo Mugeri-Tiripano – the captain since 2013, at the helm must have been delighted with the way things panned out in her first assignment.
Zimbabwe whitewashed Namibia 5-0 in the Twenty20 International series at the Sparta Recreational Club in Walvis Bay, which concluded on Thursday (January 10). This is Zimbabwe’s maiden T20I series after International Cricket Council granted international status to all T20s played between two countries a few months back.
The finishing touches to this massive result were provided by Nomatter Mutasa (4 for 9) and Precious Marange (3 for 5) in the final game, as they dismissed Namibia for 60. Marange then remained unbeaten on 32 to complete the nine-wicket win in 9.3 overs.
Zimbabwe dominated through the series. In the first match on January 5, they restricted Namibia to 96 for 5 before chasing down the target with six wickets in hand.
Again bowling first in the second T20I, Zimbabwe gave themselves a target of 78 and chased it down to record an eight-wicket win.
The third game was the big one with a series win on the cards. Pumped up for the occasion, Musonda led the way with a 49-ball 60, which included nine fours. Cameos from Chipo Mugeri and Modester Mupachikwa took Zimbabwe to 136 for 8. Nomvelo Sibanda, Mutasa and Loreen Tshuma picked up two wickets each to restrict restrict the home team to 79 for 9 and secure a 57-run win.
Zimbabwe batted first in the fourth game also, and Mupachikwa led the way with a career-best 75 not out. She and Musonda (45 not out) put on an unbroken third-wicket stand of 107 as Zimbabwe finished with 150 for 2 on the board.
Debutant Chiedza Mzembe, the 16-year-old right-arm seamer, picked up two wickets to contribute towards Zimbabwe restricting Namibia to 81 for 8.
“Today I took my first international catch and my first international wickets. I always celebrate when I take wickets, but today it was very different,” Mzembe told Daily News after the match.
Zimbabwe’s series whitewash comes after they had lost to Uganda late last year.