Zimbabwe Defeat 319 for 4 (Rasa 102*, Williams 91, Shariz 2-62) Netherlands 315 for 6 (Vikramjith 88, Edwards 83, Raza 4-55) by six wickets
Raza’s impact on the game was complete, claiming four wickets and helping the opposition to what he considered an „equal” total of 315 – such was the nature of the track. It culminated in some truly militant power-hitting, as he made an unbeaten 102 off 54 balls to reach the fastest ODI century by a Zimbabwean player.
But while Raza has rightfully grabbed all the headlines, Williams’ role can’t be understated. His one knock was an exhibition in sports management. Coming into bat in the 14th over, he took a few overs to come in before losing 48 runs from 17-21 overs. He was plugging away at a steady rate before Raza joined him in the 25th over.
At that point, Raza immediately made his intentions clear, and Williams took on a more reserved role. While the Netherlands spurned some dropped chances during the innings, once Williams – and then Raza – got going, the Zimbabwean juggernaut could not be stopped.
But despite their best efforts, they weren’t allowed to get out of hand as Raza – using his vast experience and array of variations – continued to attack the ball. Raza, who broke the first-wicket union with a quick one out off O’Dowd, struck in his next over as well, cleaning up Wesley Baresi in another over.
Just as Edwards and Vikramjith were hoping for a big finish, Raza returned for a sweep when the latter was on 88 in the 39th over, breaking a threatening stand. That wicket of a set batter would take the momentum out of the Netherlands’ innings; They scored 81 off the last ten overs, a good effort but not good enough in terms of surface.
That would prove to be the case as Raza returned with the bat to land the final blow in an otherwise respectable Netherlands performance.
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