Lady Chevrons buzzing af­ter white wash

Sunday News (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page - Mehluli Sibanda Se­nior Sports Re­porter

‘Re­vive do­mes­tic cricket to en­sure

suc­cess’ ZIM­BABWE na­tional women cricket team cap­tain, Mary-Anne Mu­sonda is ex­cited af­ter their five nil white­wash of Namibia in the Namib Desert T20 Women Chal­lenge, which con­cluded last Thurs­day at Sparta United Club in Walvis Bay.

It was Mu­sonda’s first se­ries as cap­tain fol­low­ing her ap­point­ment as Lady Chevrons skip­per last month. She has de­scribed win­ning the se­ries against Namibia as some­thing heart­en­ing see­ing that they last played against in­ter­na­tional op­po­si­tion in May last year.

“It’s an en­cour­ag­ing feel­ing. Com­ing into this se­ries I be­lieved we could win all five games. I tried to chan­nel my en­er­gies to­wards this goal. I’m pleased it worked out as I be­lieved it would,’’ Mu­sonda said.

On what was vi­tal in ac­com­plish­ing this goal, the all rounder pointed to stick­ing to the game plan and car­ry­ing it out.

“The key to this was stick­ing to the team plan. The ex­e­cu­tion of this plan re­ally came to­gether in each game. The ladies ap­plied them­selves and played their roles,’’ she said.

Prior to leav­ing for Namibia, Mu­sonda said they had to be hon­est with each other in or­der to stim­u­late the whole team to de­liver.

“It took a lot of hon­est and sin­cere con­ver­sa­tions in the chang­ing rooms to get the team mo­ti­vated to per­form at their best. It be­came eas­ier as we ap­proached the end of the train­ing camp.”

With the In­ter­na­tional Cricket Coun­cil Twenty20 World Cup Africa Qual­i­fier com­ing up in May, the Zim­bab­wean women have to come up with a so­lu­tion to beat Uganda, a team that has trou­bled them since 2017. It was the Ugan­dans who beat Zim­babwe by three wick­ets in ICC Women World T20 Africa Qual­i­fier in Wind­hoek, in Septem­ber 2017. Uganda also de­feated Zim­babwe by seven runs in the fi­nal of the Women’s T20 Chal­lenge held in Harare in May last year. “I think just stick­ing to our game plan will put us in a win­ning po­si­tion. Ev­ery­one in the team has to come to the party and give their best. That game (Uganda game) will be more of a men­tal game more than it is just a nor­mal game con­sid­er­ing our pre­vi­ous loss,’’ Mu­sonda said.

Lady Chevrons coach, Adam Chifo gave all the praise to his play­ers for putting up a pol­ished dis­play top clean sweep Namibia. “It’s al­ways a good feel­ing to win 5-0, credit must go to the ladies for putting up a good all round per­for­mance in all de­part­ments. Our top four bat­ters re­ally ap­plied them­selves in ev­ery in­nings and our bowl­ing was very good both the seam­ers and spin­ners bowled in part­ner­ship,’’ Chifo said.

Ac­cord­ing to Chifo, the play­ers will be given a one­week break prior to play­ing matches against Un­der-16 boys in Harare ev­ery Satur­day from 26 Jan­uary.

“The girls have a week’s break when we re­turn home. From the 26th of this month we will be play­ing un­der 16 boys team in Harare two T20s ev­ery Satur­day plus a bat­ting a camp, fol­lowed by a bowl­ing camp in Fe­bru­ary. We also have a fit­ness pro­gramme that they will be do­ing in their re­spec­tive prov­inces,’’ out­lined Chifo.

Plans are also be­ing made for the South Africa-based duo of Chiedza Mzembi and Lor­raine Tshuma as well as other play­ers domi­ciled in the neigh­bour­ing coun­try to be part of the camps so that the coun­try gets to field their best team in the Qual­i­fier.

Chifo is con­vinced that they are a bet­ter team than Uganda in all as­pects of the game, all they need is to have an op­ti­mistic ap­proach when they clash with the East Africans.

“We are bet­ter than Uganda in all de­part­ments, we just have to keep a pos­i­tive at­ti­tude when we play them. Both losses were due to pres­sure which wasn’t there re­ally but we can over­come that when we meet them this time,’’ he said.

e Zim­bab­wean women, who have been in Namibia since 3 Jan­uary re­turned home last night.

Mary-Anne Mu­sonda

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