Zim, Sri Lanka match aban­doned due to heavy rain

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport -

A HEAVY thun­der­storm and a damp out­field forced the aban­don­ment of the fourth game of the tri-series af­ter just 13.3 overs in Bu­l­awayo. De­spite overnight rain and over­cast con­di­tions, Zim­babwe cap­tain Graeme Cre­mer chose to bat again. A few min­utes af­ter the toss, a driz­zle turned heav­ier to de­lay the start by seven min­utes.

The Zim­babwe open­ers had be­gun in sprightly fash­ion de­spite sub­stan­tial lat­eral move­ment for Sri Lanka’s seam­ers. Chamu Chib­habha, in par­tic­u­lar, looked pos­i­tive from the out­set, punch­ing his drives on the up through the cov­ers be­fore he missed an in­ducker from Nuwan Ku­lasekara in the fifth over that pinned him plumb in front.

Brian Chari was in­volved in an­other runout when he clipped a ball to­wards mid­wicket in the 11th over and set off for a non-ex­is­tent run. Ervine sent him back, but Kusal Mendis’ throw to the keeper was swift and caught Chari more than a foot short. Craig Ervine, who has struck three fifties in his last four in­nings, be­gan flu­ently. He struck three fours — all through ex­tra cover — in his un­beaten 30-ball 23.

A steady build-up of threat­en­ing clouds and light­ning on the hori­zon forced the um­pires to take the play­ers off even be­fore the del­uge be­gan. Af­ter a spell of heavy rain, the out­field had en­dured enough dam­age for the game to be called off af­ter two in­spec­tions.

“We tried to give three hours for the out­field to im­prove with cer­tain ar­eas quite wet,” um­pire Michael Gough ex­plained. “The guys would have been in dan­ger of slip­ping if we had played a short­ened game.”

The re­sult meant Zim­babwe had to win their final game of the round-robin stage, against West Indies on Novem­ber 25, in order to stand a chance of qual­i­fy­ing for the final. — Cricinfo

Craig Ervine struck a flu­ent 23 not out be­fore heavy rain ended the fourth match of the tri-series in Bu­l­awayo yes­ter­day. — AFP

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