HARARE – Zimbabwe ladies cricket team begin their quest to achieve One Day International (ODI) status with a clash against Ireland at the ICC Women’s World Cup Qualifiers in Colombo, Sri Lanka this morning.
The team is high in confidence after making light work of Scotland winning by 95 runs in their only warm-up encounter to acclimatise with the Sri Lankan conditions on Sunday.
Zimbabwe batted through their entire 50 overs totalling 197 runs for the loss of nine wickets.
Openers Modester Mupachikwa and Loren Tshuma setting the platform with 23 and 32 runs respectively before Pellagia Mujaji anchored the innings with a top score of 39.
Scotland could only managed 102 runs all out inside 33 overs with Zimbabwean bowlers Anesu Mushangwe and the New Zealand-based Tasmeen Granger picking up two wickets apiece.
Zimbabwe are in Group A together with India, New Zealand, Thailand, hosts Sri Lanka and their opponents in today’s match Ireland. The tourney will see 10 teams battling for the remaining four places in the World Cup to be staged in England from June 26 to July 23.
In addition to this the top four sides also stand to automatically enter in the second edition of the ICC Women’s Championship while fifth and sixth-placed sides will secure One Day International status for the next four years.
Team captain Sharne Mayers said her charges will take it one game at a time as they strive to reach for the stars and believes the warm up win comes as a morale booster ahead of today’s meeting with Ireland.
“The warm up victory was great as we got to experience the conditions we are going to face in the tournament. It also has raised our confidence but (we) are very aware that it was a warm up match and things will be different once the tournament begins,” Mayers told the Daily News from Sri Lanka.
“Our first port of call is getting ODI status.”
Head coach Trevor Phiri in his pre-departure sentiments emphasised the need for the team to bat through their overs and boost chances of making significant total and if the warm up match against the Scottish is anything to go by, then the girls are headed for glory.
Zimbabwe squad: Sharne Mayers (capt), Precious Marange, Esther Mbofana, Pellagia Mujaji, Modester Mupachikwa (wk), Marry-Anne Musonda, Nomatter Mutasa, Ashley Ndiraya, Josephine Nkomo, Nonhlanhla Nyathi (wk), Loreen Tshuma, Tasmeen Granger, Nomvelo Sibanda and Anesu Mushangwe.
Coach: Trevor Phiri