One of the most crucial games of the World Cup Qualifier gets underway today, as hosts Zimbabwe battle it out with the West Indies at the Harare Sports Club. The two teams have faced each other 47 times in ODIs since their first meeting at Worcester in the 1983 World Cup, with the Windies enjoying an impressive 35-10 record. Here is a look back at five of the best ODIs from this fixture.
Seventh ODI, NatWest Series, Chester-le-Street, 2000
Zimbabwe made it three wins out of three against the West Indies in the tri-series in England with their then highest successful chase. The Windies reached 287/5 due to Sherwin Campbell (105) and Brian Lara (87), and then had Zimbabwe at 104/4. However, Murray Goodwin (112*) and Grant Flower (96*) added a record 186* for the fifth wicket to seal a six-wicket win with five balls to spare.
Second ODI, Carlton Series, Brisbane, 2000-01
The West Indies held on for a one-wicket win in this tri-series clash at the Gabba. Alistair Campbell’s 81 guided Zimbabwe to 154/2 before the Windies came back to keep them to 240/9. In reply, the West Indians kept losing regular wickets, and at 155/6, Zimbabwe were ahead. But Ricardo Powell had other ideas: he hit 83* in the company of the tail, taking his team to victory with eight balls left.
The Zimbabweans are a jubilant lot after Mluleki Nkala gets the final West Indian wicket at Sydney in 2000-01 (source – gettyimages)
Sixth ODI, Carlton Series, Sydney, 2000-01
Ten days later, Zimbabwe turned the tables with a superb bowling effort under the SCG lights. The West Indian bowlers, led by Cameron Cuffy (4/24), bowled Zimbabwe out for 138, with captain Heath Streak, who came in at 66/6, top-scoring with a hardy 45. Streak starred with the ball as well, snaring 4/8 as the West Indies shockingly capitulated from 16/0 to 31/8, before folding for 91.
First ODI, Providence, 2009-10
Vusi Sibanda (95) and Tatenda Taibu (56) shared 100 for the second wicket to steer Zimbabwe to 254/5. Captain Chris Gayle (57), Adrian Barath (50) and Shivnarine Chanderpaul (70) anchored the hosts’ reply, but the rising required rate led to a flurry of wickets at the death. With the Windies needing five in four balls, Shingi Masakadza struck twice in two balls to limit them to 252/9.
Third ODI, Tri-Nation Series, Bulawayo, 2016-17
The Queens Sports Club was witness to arguably the most exciting ODI between the two sides. Zimbabwe, boosted by a third-wicket stand worth 144 between Craig Ervine (92) and Sikandar Raza (77), were cruising at 190/2 after electing to bat, only to subside to 257 all out, with Carlos Brathwaite taking 4/48. In reply, Kraigg Brathwaite (77) and Shai Hope (101) led the Windies’ charge.
The duo added 162 for the third wicket, and at 220/2, it was the Windies’ game to lose. Though Zimbabwe fought back, the visitors began the last over, bowled by Donald Tiripano, at 254/5. But the over saw three wickets fall, including two run-outs. With one to win off the last ball, non-striker Jonathan Carter was caught short by the keeper’s throw, leaving the score 257/8 and the game tied.