ON THURSAY I sat in the same spot, five years apart, as the glass-pane of Harare Sports Club’s media centre was smashed by the batsman’s towering six.
It was nearly the same shot by the two right-handers – brute power, over the bowler’s head, and the rocket crashing into the glasses of the press box.
First it was Rovman Powell with his maiden hundred in March 2018, a 100-ball 101, guiding the West Indies to a 52-run victory over Ireland in the World Cup Qualifiers at Sports Club.
With Zimbabwe hosting the qualifiers again, the men from the Caribbean have been involved in another match that sent Press corps scurrying for cover following a loud bang on the window.
This time around it was Nepal number 10 batter Karan KC’s turn to cause damage on the windowpane of our working area with a rocket that soared over long on.
The West Indies were the ones now at the receiving end of the blow, although comfortably beating the South Asians by 101 runs in the end. Yes, 101 runs! Powell’s individual score five years ago when he steered the Windies against the Irish.
Powell is back in Zimbabwe for these qualifiers and on Thursday against the Nepalese he scored 29, batting at number six. Jason Holder, one of three survivors from the match against Ireland five years ago, batted a slot lower at seven. Five years ago, it was vice-versa.
Coincidence? Maybe. But for me it’s symbolic, having witnessed the two missiles flying my way before coming to a halt via a glass buffer. It’s sign that this tournament is well and truly underway in Zimbabwe. It’s our tournament, our mini-World Cup, and the public in this country must sit back and enjoy it while it lasts.
Zimbabwe fans have been in delirium over the team’s performance lately, something that has carried into this tournament. By the time you read this, there might have been a bit of twists and turns, permutations and stuff like that. Anyhow, the Chevrons are still firmly in hunt for a place in the Super Six stage of the tournament.
Circumstances are different for Zimbabwe from 2018 when the Chevrons were prevented from qualifying for the World Cup by the unluckiest hand of little United Arab Emirates. But like many of you, Ill rather have that miserable episode stay in the rear view mirror.
But, truth be told, the path to qualification appear tougher now that it was five years ago.
While easier said than done, however, there truly is good reason to keep believing that Zimbabwe will be one of the two teams to qualify for the World Cup finals in India later this year.
For now, let’s enjoy the journey because there have been some accomplishments posted already, and nothing should undermine that. We’ll then see what destination this particular journey takes us.