ZIMBABWE’S emerging cricket players are having a decent showing in South Africa, proving that they have what it takes to compete on the global stage after giving their South African counterparts a run for their money.
The Roy Kaia-captained emerging squad is faring well on South African soil where they are playing their counterparts in an unofficial five-match one-day series in Pretoria.
Zimbabwe is maximising on the tour to gain all-round experience as South Africa is well-up in terms of its game, ranking sixth on the One Day International standings, five places above Zimbabwe.
With the tour significant in Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC)’s strategic plan, the emerging players have proven to be a force to reckon with, taking the ascendency by claiming a one-nil lead in the first tie of the five-match series with a six-wicket victory on Sunday.
Joylord Gumbie, Milton Shumba and Clive Madande all scored half-centuries in the victory while Tanaka Chivanga and Brandon Mavuta shared seven wickets between them.
Mavuta, who leads the wickets column in the series was equally outstanding with the ball Tuesday claiming four scalps before scoring 68 runs in Zimbabwe’s 19-run defeat to the hosts.
Once again 22-year-old Madande put on a decent show with the bat, scoring 40-runs to lead the batting leaderboard while Wesley Madhevere joined the act with 55 runs as Zimbabwe emerging fell just short of the 295 runs scored by their neighbours to level the series.
Four-Zimbabwean batsmen lead the top five while two bowlers are among the top-three wicket-takers in the series as the Zimbabweans are going toe to toe with their neighbours.
Meanwhile, having recorded a victory apiece, the rivals will battle to take the lead in the next match pencilled for Friday in Pretoria.
The tour is part of preparations for the 2027 One Day International World Cup giving Zimbabwe’s Emerging Players a platform to gain exposure playing against world-class opposition.