Zimbabwe Cricket batting coach Stuart Matsikenyeri has admitted that batting was the team’s weakest link in the huge first Test defeat to Pakistan.
After an innings and 116 run defeat, how do you pick yourself up especially against a super confident Pakistan side?
The visitors’ triumph coincided with the birthday of their changing room attendant, Kuda Munyede, whom they treated to a cake.
Signs of a happy changing room.
Zimbabwe’s was the opposite and the loss of opener Prince Masvaure who was hit on the left hand and could not bat in the second innings, compounded the team’s woes.
Defeat inside three days means Zimbabwe had more time to reflect as well as prepare for the second and final Test that starts tomorrow at Harare Sports Club.
“We were poor as a batting group, I think we didn’t do the team any favour to put ourselves in a position to compete in that Test match,” said Matsikenyeri.
“It’s something that the batting group has taken responsibility for. The job that we have done in the last few days has been to work hard to come back strong in the second Test.
“We want to polish up with our shot selection, just patience at the crease…that’s what Test cricket is about. So we have worked hard on just making sure we are defending our wickets a lot better than we did in the first Test.”
Matsikenyeri remains confident that the team can upset Pakistan.
“We certainly came into this series looking to win a Test match at least and we have gone down in one but it doesn’t mean we can’t come back.
“Obviously they (Pakistan) are on a high, our changing room is hurting and we want to come back with a win so our thought process has been working towards winning the Test match,” he said.
Zimbabwe is set to go into the match still without Sean Williams and Craig Ervine who both have failed to recover from a hand and calf injuries respectively.
Top order Wesley Madhevere has been added to the squad and could slot in, in the middle order.
It will be interesting to see if the selectors will make changes to the bowling attack.
The two pacemen sitting outside are Victor Nyauchi and Tanaka Chivanga while Wellington Masakadza is the spinner.