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Another year, another game of Test match cricket. This time, we set out on the road up to the Hawke's Bay town of Napier to see the Zimbabwe team make their return to Test match cricket. The Friday had largely been rained out, and so after two days, New Zealand were 395 - 5. So, we thought there'd be plenty of cricket to see over the Saturday and Sunday, so we didn't exactly hurry up to Napier. Part way there, we thought we'd flick on the radio to hear what was happening.

New Zealand had declared on 495 - 7 with centuries to Ross Taylor and BJ Watling. Zimbabwe had started to bat and it was carnage. By the time we arrived in Napier, at lunch after 15 overs of the Zimbabwe innings, they were 20 - 5. In the end, the Zimbabweans were all out for 51. That score could have been much less if it hadn't been for 23 from Malcolm Waller. No one else reached double figures for Zimbabwe.

So, the Zimbabweans had to follow on and bat again. They did better 2nd time around, but only marginally so. They were reduced to 37 - 6 before Regis Chakabva and Graeme Cremer salvaged some respectibility by putting on a partnership of 63. Another partnership between Chakabva and Shingi Masakadza delayed the inevitable, but Zimbabwe were bowled out for 143 just before the scheduled close of play. This left New Zealand victorious by an innings and 301 runs.

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Top Left: A lovely day at McLean Park, Napier. The crowd was a bit sparse but it was well worth heading along to the ground, lying back in the sun and watching some cricket.

Top Right: Daniel Vettori has just bowled here and the Zimbabwean batsman is trying to play it away into the offside. Not 100% sure who the batsman is, but given Vettori is bowling and this was taken in the first innings, the batsman could be Malcolm Waller, Graeme Cremer or Shingi Masakadza.

Right: A closer shot of Daniel Vettori sending down the ball. I'm *pretty* sure that the non-striker is Malcolm Waller, but no guarantees.

Bottom Left: Brian Vitori, Zimbabwean number 11 and pretty poor batsman in the process of edging the ball from Tim Southee through to Dean Brownlie at third slip. Brownlie is the slip fielder on the right hand side. The ball can be seen just next to Vitori's bat.

Bottom Right: A legend of Zimbabwean cricket, and now apparently the bowling coach to the team. This is Heath Streak.
I found it, I found it and it was THIS big!!
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See also: Domestic Cricket

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