Windies edge Zimbabwe to stay on World Cup course


HARARE — West Indies edged closer to a place in the 2019 World Cup when it defeated Zimbabwe by four wickets in the latest qualifying match Monday.

Chasing 290 to win, the two-time champion reached its target with six balls to spare after surviving a worrying mid-innings collapse.

The West Indies leads the Super Sixes qualifying table with six points but will still need to avoid defeat against Scotland Wednesday in their last pool match to be sure of a place in next year's finals.

Zimbabwe, on five points, can still make the 2019 finals by beating the UAE Thursday although the Scots, Ireland and Afghanistan all remain in contention for a spot in the showpiece in England and Wales.

Brendan Taylor top scored for Zimbabwe with 138 which included 20 boundaries and two sixes.

For the West Indies, Marlon Samuels smashed 86 off 80 balls with four sixes while Evin Lewis and Shai Hope also contributed half centuries.

Law hails Holder

West Indies coach Stuart Law praised captain Jason Holder's bowling display, after his team chased down 290 to beat Zimbabwe by four wickets Monday.

The home side was indebted to Brendan Taylor's 10th One-Day International hundred as it managed 289 all out from its 50 overs in Harare, but fifties from Evin Lewis, Shai Hope and Marlon Samuels helped the Windies over the line despite a late collapse.

Law pointed toward Holder's four wickets as the difference between Zimbabwe posting a score out of reach and limiting it to below 300 in the crucial qualifying encounter.

"Jason Holder, for the whole game, was outstanding," said Law.

"To only go for 35 runs in his 10, with a total of 290, is outstanding. And also picking up four wickets.

"At one stage with Brendan Taylor there, Zimbabwe looked like getting 320, 330, 340. Our fielding was very good as well. The energy we showed was outstanding."

Brief scores:

Zimbabwe 289 all out in 50 overs (Brendan Taylor 138; Jason Holder 4-35, Kemar Roach 3-55) vs. West Indies 290-6 in 49 overs (Marlon Samuels 86, Shai Hope 76, Evin Lewis 64). West Indies won by four wickets. — AFP