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Zimbabwe seal top place in Group B after tie against Scotland

Safyaan Sharif (right) picked five wickets against Zimbabwe
Safyaan Sharif (right) picked five wickets against Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe 210 (Ervine 57) v
Scotland 210 (Berrington 47)
Match Tied
20th game, Group B, ICC World Cup Qualifiers in Bulawayo

Blessing Muzarabani picked the decisive final wicket of Bradley Wheal as Zimbabwe managed to come from behind and tie their final Group B encounter in the ICC World Cup Qualifiers against Scotland in Bulawayo.

Chasing 211 for a win, Zimbabwe spinners made early inroads into Scotland batting line-up with Tendai Chisoro (3-42) accounting for Matthew Cross (13) and Tom Sole (4) while Sean Williams (1-39) snared Calum MacLeod (1) as Scotland were reeling at 55 for three.

Kyle Coetzer (39), Richie Berrington (47) and George Munsey (29) all showed resilience in the middle order as the score neared 150-run mark but Graeme Cremer (3-21) dealt a major blow to Scotland removing all three set batsmen thereby exposing the lower order.

Michael Leask (28 not out) rallied around the tail to help Scotland closen Zimbabwe's total of 210 and the target came down to 24 off the final three with two wickets in hand.

Leask struck a couple of boundaries in the 48th over while Matt Watt (17) struck 10 runs in the penultimate over to take Scotland's total to 209. Tendai Chatara (1-26) provided the vital blow in having Watt caught in the final delivery of the penultimate over and to make worse for the visitors, Leask crossed at the other exposing the number 11 Wheal (0) in the final over.

With just 2 runs to defend, Muzarabani (1-36) bowled a wide allowing Scotland to level the scores but managed to have Wheal caught behind in his next delivery, thereby ending the game in a tie.

Earlier, it was a five-wicket haul from Safyaan Sharif (5-33) that troubled Zimbabwe as despite Brendan Taylor (44) and Craig Ervine (57) playing valiant knocks they managed to get only 210 runs on the board before they were bowled out in the 47th over.

Sharif bagged the man of the match award as both the teams progressed to the Super Six stage with seven points apiece.

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