The Herald (Harare)

Zimbabwe: Zim Women Cricket Team Wins Gold

ZIMBABWE women's cricket team has made it to the last round of the 2014 ICC Twenty20 Cricket World Cup global qualifiers in Ireland next year following a good outing in the regional tournament held in Tanzania this week.

The team, led by captain Ashley Ndiraya, will now join seven other countries -- that include Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Canada, Japan, Netherlands and Ireland - in the final qualifiers in August next year.

Another country is expected to come from the Asian qualifiers to join in the battle for the sole ticket to the 2014 event.

Champions Australia, England, New Zealand, West Indies, India South Africa and the women's T20 World Cup hosts Bangladesh have already booked their places for the T20 World Cup.

Zimbabwe excelled at the just-ended preliminary qualifiers in Tanzania where they finished tied on nine points with South Africa at the end of the round robin matches on Wednesday.

However, South Africa sat on top of the table because of a better run-rate.

Six countries that include Namibia, Kenya, Uganda and hosts Tanzania took part in the tournament.

Since South Africa had already qualified to the finals prior to the regional qualifiers, Zimbabwe, by virtue of being the second best team, clinched the ticket to the next stage.

Zimbabwe beat Namibia by eight wickets in their last match to finish unbeaten in five starts.

The team walked away with gold medals and a floating trophy while South Africa were give a token of appreciation, trophies and medals by the organisers.

In their first match, Zimbabwe drew against South Africa before beating the hosts Tanzania.

Zimbabwe made light work of Uganda in their third match with a 33-run victory courtesy of a good batting performance from Pellagia Mujaji.

The Zimbabwe girls also got a win against Kenya whom they beat by 25 runs and went on to register another victory against Namibia after wining by eight wickets.

The hosts got six points and walked away with the silver medal and a trophy.

Zimbabwe's team manager, Caroline Nyamande, was happy with the team's performance and attributed their success to teamwork.

"We are very happy, we won four and drew one match, which is very good. The girls did a lot of teamwork and that led to our success.

"Their performance was excellent and we are glad that we got what we were aiming for, qualifying and being the overall winners," said Nyamande.

Zimbabwe also got the individual awards with Pellagia Mujaji winning the outstanding player award against Tanazania while Precious Marange won the award against Uganda.

Shryce Saili was the star against Namibia and Christabel Chatonzwa was outstanding against Kenya.

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