Zimbabwe rarely has a chance to reach an ICC semi-final. They were one win away from the final four of the ICC Knockout (later renamed Champions Trophy) in 2000, but lost to New Zealand; they made the Super Sixes in the 2003 World Cup, but lost in the last four.
Zimbabwe, headed by an allrounder living a dream, are two steps from history. First, they must beat Netherlands, which they will want.
Zimbabwe needs a cohesive performance to stay afloat before India’s much-tougher test. Wessly Madhevere helped them score 79 in nine overs against South Africa, but the rest of their batters hardly contributed, and their bowling was clubbed for 51 in three overs; but when they squeezed through a one-run win against Pakistan, their bowlers Sikandar Raza, Brad Evans, Blessing Muzarabani, and Richard Ngarava helped defend a meagre 130; and against Bangladesh, only Sean Williams made a defining contribution as Zimbabwe fell short by
Four of Netherlands’ six World Cup games, including the opening round, have been close. India and Pakistan swept them in two of four matches. Netherlands bowlers dismissed four batters and had Pakistan work hard in their chase of 92.
The Dutch have made their imprint despite being eliminated from the Super 12s after nearly upsetting Bangladesh. Max O’Dowd is the World Cup’s fifth-highest run-scorer, and Bas de Leede is second.
Zimbabwe and Netherlands have only played each other seven times across forms, so No. 8 will be a significant deal.
Bangladesh against Zimbabwe, T20 World Cup, Brisbane, October 30, 2022. Sean Williams was sent on to counter the left-handers and took Shakib Al Hasan’s wicket.
Zimbabwe’s Sean Williams is a veteran player.
LWWLW (Last five completed matches; most recent first)
Craig Ervine and Sean Williams, two of Zimbabwe’s most experienced players, will be under the focus. Zimbabwe has posted seven single-digit scores in 12 innings since arriving in Australia, but hopes to deliver when it matters. Both are nearing the end of their careers; what better way to leave with fond memories?
In six matches, Netherlands bowlers have only given up 160+. Bas de Leede has nine wickets at 14.44, and Paul van Meekeren has seven at 19.42 and 5.66 economy. De Leede becomes 23 in a few days and van Meekeren turns 30 in January, but the Netherlands hopes they can continue to serve them well.
Zimbabwe used 13 players in Super 12s, with only bowling changes. They wouldn’t want to make too many changes to a stable unit, leaving only who to leave out if they recall Luke Jongwe.
Wessly Madhevere, Craig Ervine (captain), Milton Shumba, Sean Williams, Sikandar Raza (probable). Chakabva (wk), Blessing Muzarabani, Ryan Burl, Tendai Chatara, Brad Evans, Richard Ngarava
Bangladesh vs Netherlands, ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022, Hobart, October 24, 2022.
The Netherlands have nothing to lose, so they may give Stephan Myburgh another shot in his farewell tournament. De Leede was substituted against Pakistan after being injured in the eye and may miss Wednesday.
Vikramjit Singh, Max O’Dowd, Stephan Myburgh, Tom Cooper, Colin Ackermann (possible). Edwards (capt, wk), Roelof van der Merwe Paul van Meekeren, Tim Pringle, Logan van Beek, Fred Klaasen
Adelaide was cold and windy before the game, and 2mm of rain is anticipated on Wednesday. The game will not be affected.
Bas de Leede’s father Tim played in the Netherlands’ 2003 World Cup loss to Zimbabwe. Babette, Bas’ cousin, plays on the Dutch women’s team.
Zimbabwe overcame Australia in the first T20 World Cup in 2007 and were eliminated on net run rate.
Sikandar Raza’s 150.56 strike rate in T20Is is second-highest in 2022.