ZIMBABWE cricket team allrounder Sean Williams believes the ongoing one-day international (ODI) series in Australia has been a learning curve for the relatively inexperienced Chevrons side despite some chastening defeats in the opening two matches in Townsville.
Australia completed a comfortable eight-wicket victory over Zimbabwe in the second ODI at Riverway Stadium on Wednesday to take an unassailable 2-0 series ahead of the final game on Saturday.
After being sent in to bat, Zimbabwe, who despite their recent resurgent form had struggled when called upon to bat first, were unable to repeat their respectable batting performance from the opening game, crumbling for 96 all out in 27.5 overs.
Paceman Mitchell Starc and spinner Adam Zampa were the chief tormentors, sharing three wickets apiece as Zimbabwe’s batting line up struggled to cope with the relentless Aussies bowling attack.
In reply, Australia cruised to 100 for two in 14.4 overs to complete a dominant victory which exposed the huge gulf in quality between the two sides.
Speaking after his team’s latest defeat, Williams, who top-scored for Zimbabwe with 29, preferred to look at the positives of playing against the top sides such as India and Australia although he admitted there was a huge skills gap between the players from both teams.
“You can call it a bad day, it’s also a good sign of the difference between the two sides,” Williams said during the post-match Press conference.
“I take it as a positive, it shows us where we are, without being too negative about the whole thing, there’s definitely a skill gap between the two teams, quite a big one as well but it’s also a big opportunity for us to learn from players like this and against teams like this.”
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The veteran middle order batsman said the experience gained in Australia, which Zimbabwe had not toured in nearly 20 years, would hold his resurgent side in good stead ahead of an important schedule headlined by the T20 World Cup to be held in the same country in October.
“It will bring a bit more match awareness into the games going forward in the future and for the World Cup, and when we get back down to our kind of level, we'll be that much better,” Williams said.
“The more you play against these guys the more you are going to get better and grow in confidence. There’s a lot of work to be done from where we are but it’s a positive that some of our guys can play at this level.”
After struggling with the bat in the opening two matches, Zimbabwe will be hoping to sign off what has been a tough series on a high with a better team performance in the third and final match which will be played at the same venue on Saturday.
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