Motie in seven-heaven as he spins out Zimbabwe on opening day
Zimbabwe vs. West Indies
Day 1 of 2nd Test
Venue: Queens Sports Club, Bulawayo
West Indies left-arm spinner Gudakesh Motie took seven wickets to help dismiss Zimbabwe for 115 before the visitors finished the first day on 133-4 – 18-run lead. The hosts first innings lasted only 40.5 overs on Sunday after choosing to bat first. Opener Innocent Kaia top scored with 38.
Motie, in his third Test, took full advantage of the conditions in the back-to-back Test. He bowled with immaculate control, got the ball to turn and demonstrated great variations and change of pace for his career-best bowling figures of 7-37 in 14.5 overs.
“It’s a great feeling, it means a lot to me. I really enjoyed bowling in these spin-friendly conditions. Hopefully we can get a good total tomorrow,” Motie told the media after the day’s play.
Motie got to his first five-wicket haul in Test cricket when he picked up the wicket of Brandon Mavuta. He achieved the best ever figures for the West Indies against Zimbabwe, beating Shane Shillingford’s 6-49 in 2013.
The West Indian opening pair, Kraigg Brathwaite and Tagenarine Chanderpaul, who created history by being at the crease at some point of each day in the first test, came out with their usual confidence. However, captain Brathwaite (7 from 27) fell to the left arm spin of Masakadza in the eighth over. Raymon Reifer (53 from 86 balls) then came to the crease, and himself and Chanderpaul built the biggest partnership of the day, 73 runs off 116 balls, before Chanderpaul, who made an unbeaten double-century in the first Test, fell for 36 (77 balls).
The West Indies found themselves four wickets down before the end of the day, with Reifer being unfortunately runout and Blackwood caught by Nyauchi, pulling a short ball from Mavuta – who continues to stand out for his team with the ball, finishing the day with figures of 2-24.
The West Indies will be eager to get a sizeable lead on Monday. With the first Test ending in a draw, after losing a full day to rain, both teams will be eager to win this virtual final. Play restarts on Monday at 10am (4am Eastern Caribbean/3am Jamaica).