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Zimbabwe skipper Sikandar Raza 'gutted' despite thrilling win over Ireland

December 08, 2023 11:06 AM

Harare : Zimbabwe skipper Sikandar Raza was 'gutted' after failing to stay in the middle till the very end as his team clinched a thrilling one-wicket win over Ireland.

Raza starred with the bat as his team clinched a last-ball victory against Ireland in a thrilling opening T20I of a three-match series. Raza put up a clinical display with both bat and ball to lead Zimbabwe to a 1-0 series lead against Ireland.

Raza smashed 65 runs off 42 balls, hitting five fours and two sixes, and was on track to remain unbeaten however Mark Adair produced a stunning delivery and grabbed his wicket with the hosts needing 11 runs off nine balls while chasing 148.

"Nice to be part of history. Credit to fans for coming out in numbers. First game under lights, cracker of a game. Thought they got five to eight too many. Credit to Delany to have batted the way he did. Happy with the chase, credit to the batters. Made mistakes here and there but important that we got over the line. I am never a guy who looks into personal performances. I was gutted to have not finished the game," Raza said in a post-match presentation.


Blessing Muzarabani inside-edged Barry McCarthy for a couple as Zimbabwe crossed the finish line with two runs needed off the final ball. Meanwhile, Raza was named Player of the Match after finishing with figures of 4-0-28-3.


Clive Madande pulled Barry McCarthy for a six and four to make it a 19-run game and reduce the asking rate to run a ball. Zimbabwe appeared to be on course for a comfortable victory at that moment, but Little castled Madande. The Zimbabwe batter went back to the pavilion after scoring a crucial 20 off 11 balls.

"The little knock from Clive Madande was very crucial. Wessly got out at a wrong time. Pretty happy and proud of my team. Just wanted to tell Madande that if you remain positive, you'll see the ball better. When you give responsibility to these guys they do well. Everything that happens stays on the field," he added.

The second T20I between Zimbabwe and Ireland is scheduled to take place on Saturday.

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