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Last Updated: Wednesday, 12 September 2007, 15:22 GMT 16:22 UK
As it happened: Australia v Zimbabwe

WORLD TWENTY20, Cape Town:
Zimbabwe 139-5 (19.5 overs) bt Australia 138-9 (20 overs) by five wickets


By Pranav Soneji


e-mail (with 'Pranav Soneji' in the subject) or use 606 or text 81111

Thanks to all who tuned in for a truly brilliant game, just goes to show you can be commanders of all in the world of leather on willow and still get your trousers pulled down in front of the entire world. Over and out team.

Absolutely brilliant victory, who'd a thunk it? The Zimbabwe boys are celebrating like they've just discovered the entire gold reserves of the Bank of England in Tatenda Taibu's box. So good to see, not just because the Australians lost - did I mention that? However, a major warning for England not to underestimate the former whipping boys of world cricket.


20th over: Zim 135-5 1st ball: FOUR! Brilliant shot from Taylor, who sweeps Bracken past short fine leg but snatches a single with the second. Chigumbura somehow fashions two runs. Five from three balls. Single from Chigumbura and the rain is falling. Four off two. Four leg byes! Taylor gets a massive chunk of pad and the ball runs down fine to the boundary, despite the desperate dive from Stuart Clark.

Wicket falls
19th over: Zim 123-5 WICKET! Masakadza lbw b Lee 27 Top ball first up from Lee, right at Masakadza's feet for a single. Taylor does the same the next ball, but a boundary is desperately need here. Oh dear, Masakadza tries to lift Lee over fine leg but is stuck plumb in front. Needless. Elton Chigumbura is the new man at the crease. Taylor gets a thick inside edge for two, but a boundary is essential from the last ball of the over, but Taylor can only find Stuart Clark on the deep cover boundary. Zim need 12 to win from six balls.

18th over: Zim 121-4 Bracks is back, bowling blockhole yorkers but both batsmen fashion singles to put the pressure on the fielders. Two more runs are added from Masakadza but Bracken responds with a two excellent yorkers. Top over from Bracken. Zim need 18 from 12 balls.

That's 50
17th over: Zim 116-4 Brett Lee is back into the attack and starts off with a good yorker aimed right at Taylor's toes, but he scampers through for another single for a thoroughly well deserved half century. Don't celebrate too much son, you've got a job to do. The batting pair take advantage of a wayward through for an overthrow, their running between the wickets is awesome. Club favourite "Body Language" by Booka Shade rings out across the ground. Zim need 23 from 18 balls.

16th over: Zim 110-4 Masakadza looks for a quick single but is sent back and only just makes his ground as Mitchell Johnson throws down from five yards. A thick outside edge from Masakadza evades the despairing and diving Gilly behind the sticks for four more valuable runs.

15th over: Zim 102-4 Taylor launches Hodge's off-breaks into the stands for six, Zim's first of the innings. It's also brilliantly caught by a spectator, who's celebrating as if he's just found a secret passage into the local brewery. And Taylor smashes a full-toss high into the stands once more for another massive six. Well well, what a game. Zim need 37 runs off 30 balls.

14th over: Zim 87-4 A couple of singles from Symonds before Masakadza thumps a short ball on leg stump one-bounce for four, exactly what they need to put the pressure back on the Aussies. Zim need 52 from six overs.

13th over: Zim 80-4 Excellent over from Brad Hodge, although he ruins it with a wide delivery outside off stump and Taylor thumps the ball away across the wet outfield for four.

12th over: Zim 75-4 A single off the last ball of Andrew Symonds's over and Zim need 64 off 48 balls.

1950: Looks like the covers are coming off, so play looks set to start very soon. On a tangent, nice to see an Elton playing international cricket, my other favourite Elton involved in sport was former ITV footy presenter and 80s and early 90s stalwart Elton Welsby. There aren't enough Eltons in sport these days. Apart from Elton Flatley, the Australian rugby union back. Anyone else remember any more sporting Eltons?

"So despite Zimbabwe outscoring Australia at the same point of the innings they lose, sounds like cricket needs to get a new solution. This doesn't exactly sell itself to the layman out there.
Chris (Slough)

It's a tough one because the whole of point of the D/L method is dependent on the game's current situation rather than a comparison between the two teams at the same stage. However that's scant consolation to those Zimbabwean players, who most be sicker than a parrot with a particularly nasty dose of the lurgies.

1932: This isn't looking good for Zimbabwe, more covers are being taken onto the pitch. D/L update: If the game is abandoned, Australia would win by six runs. Let's hope it doesn't come down to this.

"You guys won't believe this but my girlfriend won't let me watch this as she's watching Hollyoaks, so I'm going to the pub to find a new girlfriend.
Nick, Preston, Lancs

I don't think there is a programme that invades our screen more on a regular basis than Hollyoaks. Tell her to watch the omnibus like every other hungover person on Sunday morning. Tsk, this country.


Rain delay
12th over: Zim 74-4 The dreadlocked Symonds is on and Punter's looking at his Duckworth/Lewis sheet trying to work out what's going on if the rain takes over. And it's coming down pretty hard at the moment. And there it is, umpire Asad Rauf calls for the covers and the players jog off. If the game is abandoned, Australia would win by the D/L method. I have no idea how and why, but I'll tell you more when I know more.

Wicket falls
11th over: Zim 70-4 WICKET! Matsikenyeri ct Gilchrist b Clark 3 A shocker from world's best fielder (trademark) Andrew Symonds gifts Brendan Taylor two runs as the pair close down on Australia's total. Matsikenyeri is out there with Taylor and oh dear - he's only gone and gifted his wicket. He attempts to pull Clark to square leg but gets a high top edge for another comfortable catch to Gilly. Zim 71-4

"Is it just me, or as this goes on, are Australia's new outfits looking less like muscle tops and more like bibs?"
Jamie, Bognor

10th over: Zim 66-3 Absolutely comical running between the wickets, the Australians could have had two - yes two - run outs at either end but for wayward throws. It's the kind of running that makes you shout the kind of expletives that would make Peter Reid blush. But Taylor lifts the pressure with a well-struck square cut for four, which he follows up with two more runs. This is getting exciting.

"If this continues on the way it is going at the moment, I will actually wet myself with excitement. This is the same Zimbabwe that tied with Ireland 6 months ago, so by my logical reasoning Ireland will be world champions."
Michael May

9th over: Zim 58-3 Bit of consolidation from the Zim boys, although Brendan Taylor gets the pulse racing with an airy waft outside off. He does the same again, but this time gets a large chunk of willow on the ball for a single down to third man. There's a bit of drizzle around, but nothing to leg it back to the "bus shelters" for.

8th over: Zim 55-3 WICKET! Taibu ct Gilchrist b Johnson 0 Curse of the (e) commentator, Taibu nicks a regulation catch to Gilchrist behind the sticks off a good delivery with extra pace and bounce from Johnson. Business as usual or a just a mere ink blot on the pages of dog-eared pages of cricket history?

Wicket falls
7th over: Zim 54-2 WICKET! Chibhabha ct Gilchrist b Clark 15 Chibhabha saunters down the wicket attempting to loft Clark to Venus, but gets right underneath the ball, sending the thing skyward. Gilly calmly calls for the ball and takes a safe catch. Bit unnecessary from Chamu, out strolls former captain Tatenda Taibu, if ever you need a man to stay there until the bitter end...

More excellent running between the wicket between the Zim pair - and then Brendan Taylor creams a beautiful square cut, bisecting the two fielders at third man and deep cover for a incredibly well placed boundary. Stu Clark can't quite believe this, he's shaking his head.

6th over: Zim 47-1 Mitchell Johnson comes on and is turned off his hips by Chamu for four. Clever shot, especially with fine leg up in the circle. SHOT! He follows that four with the most exquisite aerial straight drive for four you will see in the next week or so. My colleague Sam Lyon was using a few choice Batman phrases earlier today, that last shot was most definitely a THONK!

5th over: Zim 38-1 Ponting takes Lee off and brings on Stuart Clark, who gets turned for two by Taylor. Wafty from Chamu, who lines up a couple of magnificent swings and misses. At least he was hitting straight says commentator Ian "Chappelli" Chappell. However he most definitely makes contact with the last ball of the over, thumping it back past the bowler for four. Maker's name 'n' all in that shot.

Wicket falls
4th over: Zim 31-1 Sibanda ct Gilchrist b Bracken 23 Oh lordy, me and my big mouth. Sibanda tries to smash Bracken to Mars and edges a massive nick to the green gloves of Gilly behind the sticks. Chamu Chibhabha is the new man at the crease.

Taylor chips Bracken over mid-wicket for two, followed up with a nudge for a single. Sibsy promptly dispatches Bracken straight back over his head for four - and if you're Australian NOW YOU KNOW HOW WE FEEL.

"Just how do birds do that make up thing on the train without ending up ferociously optically damaged and with a face like a Pierrot clown?"
Desert man

3rd over: Zim 24-0 Sibanda makes room for himself on the leg side and thumps Lee through the covers for the most expansive four you will see at this tournament - and plays exactly the same shot - with the same result - the very next ball.

2nd over: Zim 13-0 Nothing silly from Brendan Taylor, who dabs Nathan Bracken for a really well judged single. Sibanda decides that cavalier cricket is the way to go and misses the biggest mow since the Wembley Stadium turf last had a trim. Sibanda then extends his arms and smashes a wide long-hop from Bracken to the cover boundary.

1st over: Zim 8-0 The rain has stopped and Brett Lee takes the new ball, sending his first two balls wide of Vusi Sibanda's leg stump. The blonde bombshell gets his radar on track and bowls a hostile-looking short ball outside Sibanda's off-stump. Sibanda gets off the mark with nice looking drive before a massive thick edge evades second slip and runs away for four valuable runs.

1832: The news is there's a bit of rain in the Cape Town air, hopefully it won't have too much of an effect on the game. I don't think my heart could take an eight-over bashathon.

"The Aussies seem to be on the backfoot (although some players execute those better that others). I am on the train home, keeping up to date with the scores and the lady opposite me is freshening up her make-up. Why does she make funny face poses with her mouth when she is applying eyeliner and mascara?"
Tony, Cambridge

I really don't know, but tell her you've had your email published on the BBC and see if it's a potential ice-breaker. Dr 'Love' Lyon would be proud of me.

"How about 'Chiggers gets three as champs go pop'?"
Keith "Swaz" Fraser, Colorado, USA

Wicket falls
20th over: Aus 138-9 WICKET! Bracken ct Sibanda 2 b Chigumbura More brilliance in the field, this time with Vusi Sibanda at deep cover taking a good low catch from a Nathen Bracken mow. So there we have it, the world champs have been giving a bit of a rinsing in the field from the Red Army.

Wicket falls
20th over: Aus 134-8 WICKET! Johnson run out 9 More brilliant fielding from the deep sees Mitchell Johnson turning for a suicidal second and wicket-keeper Brendan Taylor hits the stumps from five yards to send the left-armer packing.

20th over: Aus 128-7 Chigumbura's back on Hodge walks at least five yards down the pitch and smashes the ball to the deep cover boundary.

"At this rate (Mark W, Aberdeen) Australia are going to have to bowl Zimbabwe out for about 35 runs."
Chris, Sahara desert

Wicket falls
19th over: Aus 121-7 WICKET! Lee bowled Brent 12 Gary Brent is back on and cleans up Brett Lee with his first ball, the off stump out of the ground. In comes Mitchell Johnson, who has probably been told to give Brad Hodge the strike at all costs. Not that he's listening as he dispatches a leg-stump full-toss to the boundary. The left-hander follows that up with another three. Aus: 128-7

18th over: Aus 119-6 Taibu continues with his trundlers and he finds the edge of Lee's bat, but the immaculate Taylor cannot cling on to the (super tough) catch. Lee then manages to swing his arms with a wide half-volley for four and then follows that up with an almighty swipe over long-off for six. Good over for the world champs.

Wicket falls
17th over: Aus 106-6 WICKET! Haddin ct Chibhabha b Utseya 6 Brad Haddin's stay at the crease is brief as the wicket-keeper fails to middle a larrup to the deep and finds the hands of Justice Chibhabha at long-on. Brett Lee joins Hodge at the crease and the pair exchange a few singles.

16th over: Aus 101-5 Hodge launches into a huge six over square leg off Mupariwa, he's the kind of man you would want in a situation like this. But still, this is Australia v Zimbabwe, it's a one-sided affair. Better over for Australia, but really excellent fielding from Zimbabwe is keeping the score down.

15th over: Aus 89-5 Just one run from Utseya over as Brad Haddin guides a single to long on. They ain't liking this dem Aussies. The Zimbabwe boys have plenty of support from their South African brethren, no doubt dotted with the odd Zimbabwean for good measure. Wicket-keeper Brad Haddin is at the crease with Hodgo.

Wicket falls
14th over: Aus 86-5 WICKET! Symonds stumped Taylor b Masakadza 33 Brad Hodge launches into a length delivery from Hamilton Masakadza and smacks it over the boundary ropes into the crowd for the first six of match. However the bowler gets his revenge two balls later thanks to a brilliant bit of keeping from Brendan Taylor, who whips off the bails as Andrew Symonds slips in the crease attempting to give it the large. Aus: 87-5

13th over: Aus 76-4 Tatenda Taibu, Zimbabwe's long-standing wicket-keeper is bowling. Strange but true. Hodge creams a cut for four and what sounds like Rearviewmirror by Pearl Jam is given a quick five-second blast. Probably best to stick to the day job, although there's nothing with a huge cherry on top demanding to be spanked out of Newlands.

12th over: Aus 69-4 Symmo latches onto a short Chibhabha delivery and tonks it to the mid-wicket boundary, followed by two more runs. Although he's hitting the ball hard Symmo can't find the Chris Gayle shots from yesterday.

11th over: Aus 60-4 Symonds comes down the wicket and spanks off-spinner Utseya straight back over his head for a brutal boundary. But the Zimbabwe boys are putting the pressure on, closing down the ball and putting plenty of doubt into the world champion's running between the wickets.

Panic over - found the missing over, apologies all. This hitfest is manic...

Wicket falls
10th over: Aus 48-4 WICKET! Hussey run out 12 Hussey gets his marching orders from the third umpire thanks to some brilliant fielding from Busi Sibanda, whose direct hit sees Hussey short by two inches. Brad Hodge is the new man at the crease. Aus: 51-4

9th over: Aus 48-3 Prosper Utseya comes on and gets carted for four from Hussey, a lovely shot over the top of mid-off. The Huss attempts a reverse sweep and completely misses it, along with wicket-keeper Taylor. The pair run three, but it's a close run three with Symonds just making his ground. I've missed an over somewhere...

8th over: Aus 37-3 What is it about Australians and their interview techniques? Almost every answer starts with "Awwwww mate look...". I blame Steve Waugh, he seems to have had a hand in everything in modern cricket, mental disintegration, monotone replies to questions... Anyways, five runs from that Chamu Chibhabha over.

7th over: Aus 32-3Tawanda Mupariwa gets hit for 10 from his first over, a Symmo for four off the last ball from the over.

6th over: Aus 22-3 Hussey and Symmo get stuck into some singles and doubles, if only I had some way of seeing all those bleary eyed Aussies waking up at some silly hour to see their team getting the run around from the Zimbabweans. Lovely cut from Symonds sees the all-rounder score a four from the last ball of Chigumbura's over.

"Nat - Are you calling me camp?"
Hulk Hogan (probably)

"Shocker on the cards? There's more chance of Sarah, Canterbury being called Nigel. Australia by a hundred."
Marc W, Aberdeen

5th over: Aus 22-3 Brent's Terry Rundler's are doing the job perfectly, seaming away off the wicket leaving Mike Hussey nibbling outside off stump. The Huss eventually gets off strike, but Symonds is having exactly the same issue. Excellent over from Gary Brent.

"Are you actually naming Hulk Hogan as an extreme example of non-camp masculinity, as opposed to Liberace? As in, the lycra-wearing, handlebar moustache-sporting, peroxide blonde Hulk Hogan? The one who made his name grappling with big men wearing tights - if you're lucky - or indeed just some small pants?"
Nat, Stoke Newington

Wicket falls
4th over: Aus 19-3 WICKET! Ponting ct Chigumbura b Brent 8 Unbelievable! Punter's just skied a top edge into the hands of Chigumbura at third man. Ponting wanted to smash it to Namibia, but looks like the pitch is very slow. Game very much indeed on. In strides Mike "My middle name is Mr Cricket" Hussey. Aus: 19-3

Wicket falls
3rd over: Aus 14-2 WICKET! Gilchrist ct Matsikenyeri b Chigumbura 4 Blimey, shocker on the cards! Gilchrist top edges a pull into the hands of Stuart Matsikenyeri in the deep. In strides Andrew Symonds, a man who lists lumping leather out of cricket balls as his favourite hobby. Punter then launches into a short ball, but the outfield is so slow the ball almost comes to a halt after bouncing.

2nd over: Aus 11-1 Gary Brent bowls quite possibly the most horrendous wide you will see (or will not) in this tournament to Adam Gilchrist. Back to the Aussie strips - there's a skin-tight grey T-shirt under a yellow "wifebeater", as they're known down under. You'd never catch England wearing anything like that, unless of course you've seen the Hugo Boss advert with Vaughan, Pietersen, Strauss and Hoggard. So camp it makes Liberace look like Hulk Hogan. Nothing of real note from that over, Ponting nicks a single off the last ball.

Wicket falls
1st over: Aus 7-1 WICKET! Hayden ct Taylor b Chigumbura 4 Gilly gets the innings under way with a leg glance off Elton Chigumbura, who is then smashed to the deep mid-wicket boundary by the bully Hayden. But the bowler gets his piece the very next ball as Hayden edges to wicket-keeper Brendan Taylor. In strides captain Ricky Ponting. Nice start for the Zimbabweans. Aus: 7-1

1657: Happy days - the covers have been whipped off and we're ready to start. Lordy, what in Bradman's name are the Australians wearing? A famous cricket impersonator could describe it as "canary yellow", but Mr Ponting could beg to differ - it's Australian gold and don't you forget it my friend.

"I had a fair-to-middling ploughman's from the Tesco Express round the corner - the main plus point coming from the centimetre thick wedge of cheese in it. Scary dreams for me tonight. Australia will hit 250."
Wayne, Bournemouth

1654: Interesting - the Australians are playing Adam Gilchrist as a specialist batsman, with Brad Haddin taking the gloves. There's no room for spinner Michael Clarke or Brad Hogg.

"Yo Pran, just to confirm, do you want a ticket getting for Norwich vs Bristol for Si's stag? Just asking in case you manage to weedle your way in as a journo."
Matt Griffin, stag do organiser extraordinaire

Griff, I want the whole world to know I'm looking forward to nothing more than spending a weekend full of artistic football, a tour of Norwich's premier mustard factory and chaining the stag to a boat bound for The Maldives.

1648: Update from Cape Town, the covers are on and the heavens have opened. Not the best, but nor is gout but most people put up with it.

1645: Apologies for that UTTER nonsense in the second paragraph of that 1645 update, I don't love Sam Lyon - I worship him... Well, OK, it wasn't me - the Lyonmeister infiltrated my password (samlyonismydaddyo) and added a few crucial updates while I wolfed down my so-so hummus bagel on a bed of ruccula. I would've taken grilled halloumi and some form of spicy relish if I had the choice. Anyone had any memorable sandwiches today?

1642: News of the toss is through and Australia have won and are going to bat first - cue utter run fest and a host of crowd catches no doubt. I only hope that I can live up the Sam 'the utter living legend' Lyon in my commentary - he really is such a genius. And good looking. And I love him.

1633: The third and final match of the day is just moments away. Just how good will these Aussies be? How many sixes will Andrew Symonds whack out of the ground? How fast will Brett Lee bowl? Should be quite a sight. No idea how these Zimbabweans will fare. The words total mismatch spring to mind.

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