T20 World Cup: Zimbabwe sink Scotland to reach Super 12 stage

By Sports Desk October 21, 2022

Captain Craig Ervine led the way as Zimbabwe roared past Scotland to reach the Super 12 stage of the T20 World Cup.

Ervine's assured 58 set the platform for Zimbabwe to chase down Scotland's 132-6, which was anchored by 54 from George Munsey.

Zimbabwe reached their target with nine balls to spare, posting 133-5, with a key to their victory being a fourth-wicket partnership of 64 between Ervine and Sikandar Raza, who rattled to 40 from just 23 balls and took man-of-the-match honours.

Ryan Burl struck the winning boundary for Zimbabwe, whose opening bowler Tendai Chatara earlier kept it tight to stifle Scotland, taking 2-14 from his four overs.

Zimbabwe had beaten Ireland in their tournament opener before losing to West Indies, while Scotland beat West Indies but lost to Ireland, setting up Friday's game in Hobart as a winner-takes-all tussle.

The victory for Zimbabwe secured top spot in Group B of the first-round stage, earning a place in Group 2 of the Super 12 stage, where they will face Bangladesh, India, Netherlands, Pakistan and South Africa.

Scotland go home, as do West Indies following their defeat to Ireland earlier on Friday.

Ireland, as runners-up to Zimbabwe, progress into Group 1 where Afghanistan, Australia, England, New Zealand and Sri Lanka await them.

Zimbabwe will stay in Hobart for their Super 12 opener, an appetising clash with South Africa on Monday.

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    Andy Robertson challenged Scotland to "make history" as they prepare for their Euro 2024 opener against hosts Germany on Friday.

    Scotland qualified for their second consecutive European championships after a strong qualifying campaign saw them finish second in their group behind Spain.

    In Euro 2020, Scotland were knocked out at the end of the group stage having earned just one point from their three games.

    Now, Robertson has urged the Tartan Army to become the first side in the nation's history to make the knockout stages of the competition, despite the tough test ahead of them.

    "We know that's what's at stake," said Robertson in a press conference. "We've got a lot of incentives, but one is becoming that legendary squad - that has to drive us forward.

    "We have to be at our best and if we can do that, who knows where we'll be come 23 June.

    "We don't want to have any regrets this time. What's the worst that can happen? We go on to a long list of teams that haven't made it out the group, or we put ourselves in a position to make history.

    "We're excited by the challenge, we're excited about what's ahead, and if we perform the way I know we can perform, then I'm confident we can make history."

    Steve Clarke is the first Scotland manager to lead the team out in two consecutive Euros, and he is confident his team can block out the noise surrounding the fixture and get a positive result.

    "One of the mantras I've had is respect everyone and fear no-one," Clarke said. "We know they're a good team, but hopefully, we can show everyone we're a good team as well.

    "We're proud we've been able to do back-to-back tournaments and hopefully, by the end of this, we'll be even more proud at having done something a bit more special."

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    After a washout stopped their first game against Scotland, England lost to Australia and knew that a defeat on Thursday would see them knocked out of the World Cup.

    Oman just could not get a foothold with only Shoaib Khan able to reach double figures with 11 as England put in a stellar bowling performance.

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    With a target of 48, England came out to bat on a mission, with Phil Salt hitting two sixes on the first two balls before being caught.

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    Julian Nagelsmann is confident his side can beat the pressure of being the host nation as they prepare to kick off the tournament against Scotland on Friday.

    The 36-year-old is taking charge of his first major tournament with Germany after taking over from Hansi Flick in September and has lost just one of his eight games since taking over.

    Germany have struggled in recent major tournaments, getting knocked out of Euro 2020 in the round of 16 before crashing out of the 2022 World Cup in the group stages.

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    "I think we're a bit nervous, but it's an important point, we have to have a certain nervousness," he said. "There was such a buzz [in the camp], a bit like in school. It was really loud: 'Can everyone please calm down a bit!'.

    "I look in our players' eyes and see the belief and will to win. I want us to believe in ourselves: we have great players, good togetherness, home advantage, we've had great training sessions and a good mentality.

    "We have everything: we just have to show it tomorrow, and that's why belief is very important.

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    Scotland arrive as heavy outsiders and are making just their fourth appearance at the Euros compared to Germany's record 14.

    The Tartan Army qualified second in their group after a strong opening to their campaign, and Nagelsmann praised their performances under Steve Clark.

    "They don't have world stars, but that makes them very dangerous," he added. "They work very hard and have a classic mentality, but it's not a kick and rush team. They can do that, but they can play football.

    "We will have more pressure on us than Scotland, and they will want to capitalise on that."

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