Pallekele (Sri Lanka), March 9 (IANS) Zimbabwe captain Elton Chigumbura feels his team will give a tough fight to Sri Lanka in their World Cup Group A match here Thursday if they are able to preserve wickets in the first 15 overs.
Zimbabwe have lost two of the three league matches so far and their solitary win came against the lower-ranked Canada. The African nation got a hammering in the last match, losing to New Zealand by 10 wickets.
Chigumbura said batting has been a major area of concern.
“We have been working on keeping our wickets in the first 15 overs, which we have not been able to do so far,” Chigumbura said.
“Our top order has been working on keeping their wickets in hand and to play a long innings from there on. Hopefully, we can do that tomorrow and if we do that I am sure we will have a good game.”
The captain admitted that facing top-class Sri Lankan spinners will be a big challenge.
“It is a big challenge. Most of their bowlers are matchwinners. We have been watching them play against other teams. As I said, If we keep our wickets in tact, we can handle them better. But if we lose wickets first up then it is going to be hard for us to come back.”
Zimbabwe rely a lot on spin for taking wickets but the pitch at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium helped the seamers in the New Zealand-Pakistan game.
Chigumbura, however, said he will not drastically change the composition of the side.
“Our spinners are more consistent. They are not big turners of the ball so it (pitch) is not going to really affect them. It is a matter of bowling a good line and length and they have been doing it for a long time. There might be one or two seamers, and we might try to make use of them. But we will mainly use our spinners,” he said.