Posted 1 years ago

Cricket T20 World Cup

Sikandar Raza: The all-rounder firing Zimbabwe

Sikandar Raza: The all-rounder firing Zimbabwe
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Zimbabwe have defeated Ireland in their first match at the T20 World Cup, with an impressive performance from Sikandar Raza. The celebration following the Raza’s catch that amounted to Ireland’s nineth wicket, is testimony that while Zimbabwe is very committed to its performance at the World Cup, it is learning to loosen up.

Key team members including Coach Dave Houghton and captain Craig Ervine,are determinedto take Zimbabwe into the Super 12 stage of the tournament, with Sikandar Raza is playing a central role.

Raza is the reigning star of the Zimbabwe team, and currently in exemplary form, having scored three centuries in six ODI innings this year, and five half-centuries in nine T20I innings, to be the sixth highest run scorer this year, with the second highest strike rate amongst the chart leaders.

While Raza is a veteran, and has been in the team for 10 years, the cricketer has admitted that his new, energetic play is due to the freedom granted by coach Houghton, whose strategy of “DavBall” advocates for players to play as they wish to, without fear of being dropped from the squad. This has allowed players like Raza to take certain risks with half of his runs against Ireland – 41- scored by pull shots.

Furthermore, the cricketer has also demonstrated his prowess in bowling. Following a surgery for cancer, he was faced with the choice to either stop bowling or change the way he did it. After 18 months of practice, he has now trained to bowl with a front-on run up, in a manner like Sunil Narine, a player he closely observed.

He has also adopted several bowling variations in his off-spin delivery, including hiding the ball. Raza is currently being vigilant about his game and physical fitness both and insists that the primary target is to perform to the best of their ability against the top teams and make it to the Super 12 stage.

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