Ballance scores unbeaten 137 on Test return to lead Zimbabwe fightback on day four

By February 07, 2023
Gary Ballance Gary Ballance

Former England batsman Gary Ballance made an unbeaten century to lead a Zimbabwean fightback on day four of the first Test in Bulawayo.

Day four started with Zimbabwe 114-3 off 41.4 overs, trailing the Windies by 333 runs.

The Zimbabweans were in further trouble when half-centurion Innocent Kaia was struck plumb in front by Alzarri Joseph for 67.

Wicketkeeper Tafazdwa Tsiga then joined Balance at the crease, facing five balls and making only two before Joseph dismissed him in a similar fashion, leaving Zimbabwe 132-5 after 51 overs at that point.

Brad Evans then made his way to the middle and added a further 15 runs with Balance before he was caught behind off the bowling of Kemar Roach for seven.

The fall of that wicket was the start of somewhat of a revival for Zimbabwe as Wellington Masakadza then joined Balance at the crease.

The pair put on a partnership of 45 for the seventh wicket, more importantly, batting for 24 overs and four balls in the process.

This pair worked and frustrated the West Indian bowlers, something that the next pair capitalized on as Balance and Brandon Mavuta, who took his maiden five-wicket haul in Tests in the West Indies first innings, put on what may very well be a match-saving 135-run eighth-wicket partnership.

Mavuta, who had a previous highest Test score of six, made his maiden half-century off 107 balls before being bowled by Jason Holder for 56 off 132 balls just after the tea break.

Just before tea, Ballance brought up his maiden Test hundred for Zimbabwe, having previously making four for England, off 190 balls.

After Mavuta was dismissed, Ballance had partnerships of 14 with Victor Nyauchi, who made 13, and 38 with Richard Ngarava, who finished 19*, as the hosts declared on 379-9 off 125 overs, trailing the West Indies by 68 runs.

Ballance finished not out on 137 from 231 balls, hitting 12 fours and two sixes.

Alzarri Joseph led the way with the ball for the Windies with 3-75 off his 26 overs. Gudakesh Motie and Jason Holder also bagged two wickets each.

At stumps, the West Indies were 21-0 off 13 overs in their second innings with Kraigg Brathwaite on 11 and Tagenarine Chanderpaul on 10.  

Scores: West Indies 447-6 declared off 143 overs (Tagenarine Chanderpaul 207*, Kraigg Brathwaite 182, Brandon Mavuta 5-140) and 21-0 off 13 overs (Kraigg brathwaite 11*, Tagenarine Chanderpaul 10*)

Zimbabwe 379-9 off 125 overs (Gary Ballance 137*, Innocent Kaia 67, Brandon Mavuta 56, Alzarri Joseph 3-75, Jason Holder 2-55, Gudakesh Motie 2-110)

 

 

Bradley Jacks

Bradley Jacks is a budding journalist and an avid sports fan. His love of research and sports has led him to SportsMax.tv, a place where those passions work hand in hand to allow him to produce content.

Related items

  • Mayers named man of the match as Fortune Barishal secures maiden BPL title with six-wicket win over Comilla Victorians Mayers named man of the match as Fortune Barishal secures maiden BPL title with six-wicket win over Comilla Victorians

    West Indian all-rounder Kyle Mayers produced a man of the match performance to help Fortune Barishal secure their first Bangladesh Premier League title with a six-wicket win over Comilla Victorians in the final at the Shere-e-Bangla Stadium in Mirpur on Friday.

    The Victorians, who entered Friday’s game seeking their third BPL title in a row and fifth overall, made 154-6 from their 20 overs after being put in to bat by Barishal.

    Mahidul Islam Ankon was the top scorer for Comilla with a measured 35-ball 38 while Andre Russell provided some lower order excitement with 27 off 14 balls including four sixes.

    James Fuller was expensive in his four overs, going for 43 while picking up a pair of wickets.

    Mayers and Obed McCoy were both economical on the day with figures of 1-26 and 1-24 from four overs, respectively.

    Barishal then needed only 19 overs to reach 157-4 and secure their maiden hold on the title.

    Mayers completed a fine all-round display with a top score of 46 off 30 balls including five fours and two sixes.

    Captain Tamim Iqbal, who was named the player of the tournament, made 39 off 26 balls including three fours and as many sixes at the top of the order.

    His opening partner, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, also batted well for his 26-ball 29.

    Mustafizur Rahman and Moeen Ali took a pair of wickets, each, for the Victorians.

  • Somerset ‘open’ to allowing rising talent Shoaib Bashir to leave on loan Somerset ‘open’ to allowing rising talent Shoaib Bashir to leave on loan

    Somerset will consider letting emerging England star Shoaib Bashir leave the club on loan this summer, with head coach Jason Kerr weighing up how best to manage the next step of the spinner’s career.

    Bashir was fast-tracked into the Test squad in India after just six first-class matches and has quickly grown into his new surroundings, with 12 wickets in two mature outings for his country.

    The 20-year-old has been identified as a player with significant long-term potential by the ECB, but with his path to first-team cricket at Taunton blocked by Jack Leach – currently recovering from knee surgery but still England’s first-choice slow bowler – his immediate future is less clear.

    Test head coach Brendon McCullum said last week it would be “slightly mad” if Bashir and Lancashire’s Tom Hartley, who has Australia’s Nathan Lyon in his way at Old Trafford, were kept on the sidelines in the county season and Kerr appreciates the dilemma.

    “It’s certainly not easy but I always try and put myself in the player’s shoes and what they want is to play cricket,” he told the PA news agency.

    “Bash will be on cloud nine right now and riding that. He would have seen the world very differently at the start of the winter than he does now that he’s had international opportunities and done very well. So it’s important to have really honest, transparent conversations.

    “We start the season on April 5th and I’d be surprised if too many teams are playing two specialist spinners so understand there will be some questions about it. There’s still a lot of water to go under the bridge, but what I’m not going to do is stand in the way of anyone’s opportunity.

    “We will always do what is best for the player and we’ve done it time and time again. We’ve allowed people to go on loan and get some cricket because it can benefit them and us in the future, and we’ve said no to players because they’re next in line and we might need them.

    “We will look at each case as it arises but, historically, we’ve been open to it.”

    Bashir’s rapid rise effectively reprises the situation Somerset experienced when fellow off-spinner Dom Bess emerged. He and Leach began by working in tandem on turning pitches but, when Bess was elevated to the Test side, the pair eventually found themselves competing for one spot.

    Leach held that berth, with Bess moving on to Yorkshire, and Kerr made it clear he retains full faith in a player who has given more than a decade of good service to Somerset.

    “It’s important we see both of the guys bowling first but we also look at what Leachy has done for club and country over the years,” he said.

    “We always want competition for places and we want it to be healthy. Nobody has the right to start but Jack has got a lot of experience and, from my side, that counts for a lot. Bash has so much time to grow and to become a world-class spinner who can bowl on all surfaces and know when to defend and attack. He’ll be coming back from India to very different conditions in the UK.

    “We’re an incredibly ambitious club and we want to inspire players to represent England. We want to help them fulfil those aspirations and that doesn’t change whether it’s Shoaib or Jack.”

  • Conditions in Dharamsala set to aid James Anderson’s bid for 700 Test wickets Conditions in Dharamsala set to aid James Anderson’s bid for 700 Test wickets

    James Anderson might find conditions more to his liking as he bids to join Test cricket’s 700 club when England regroup for their final assignment of the tour of India next week.

    England expect Anderson to be available for the fifth Test in Dharamsala, starting on Thursday, despite a sore thigh which limited his involvement on the last day of their five-wicket defeat in Ranchi.

    India’s unassailable 3-1 series advantage leaves only pride and World Test Championship points at stake, but one sub-plot centres on England’s record wicket-taker Anderson.

    The evergreen 41-year-old has advanced his tally from 690 to 698 in three outings in India, offering England his customary control on slow, low turners that have largely neutralised his wicket-taking threat.

    But his attempt to become the third individual, after Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan and the late Australian Shane Warne, and first fast bowler to reach 700 Test wickets could be aided in Dharamsala.

    The HPCA Stadium in the foothills of the Himalayas is renowned as the best venue for seamers in India and is where the national team often goes to train in preparation for tours of England and Australia.

    Temperatures in the area have struggled to get into double figures recently and, although the weather is forecast to improve next week, it is unlikely the mercury will get much above 15 degrees Celsius.

    Local officials expect the crisp English-like conditions to play into Anderson’s hands, while a recall for express speedster Mark Wood is also on the cards, with the pitch expected to offer pace and bounce.

    If Anderson’s quad injury turns out to be more serious, England could hand Gus Atkinson his Test debut, with Ollie Robinson poised to make way after his unflattering return to competitive action in Ranchi. Ben Stokes could supplement the pace bowlers after stepping up his workload in training recently.

    There was plenty of carry and consistent movement seven years ago when the Dharamsala venue staged its only Test as India beat Australia, 18 of 30 wickets from bowlers falling to the spinners.

    England are therefore likely to stick with Tom Hartley and Shoaib Bashir as their frontline spin options.

    The ground was due to hold another India-Australia contest 12 months ago, but poor outfield conditions led to the Test being shifted to Indore, while the issue reared its head again at last year’s World Cup.

    England’s players were cautious about diving in the outfield ahead of a group game against Bangladesh because of the uneven grass coverage and a sandy make-up, leading Jos Buttler to suggest the “integrity of the game” could be compromised.

    However, a new drainage system has been installed in an effort to resolve the problem and officials are confident there will be no complaints this time from England, who are due to reassemble as a group on Monday.

    Many of the squad are currently in Bangalore on a golfing trip, while Stokes, Wood, Bashir and Ben Foakes, plus the non-golfing members of the backroom staff, are in Chandigarh.

© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.