The problem with interviewing a captain, hours after a Test win, is that one has to contend with blaring music in the background. It was no different with Zimbabwe skipper Brendan Taylor on Saturday.
On Saturday, Taylor enjoyed the biggest win of his career. Before this victory, Taylor had captained Zimbabwe to two Test victories since their return to Tests in 2011, after being in exile for six years as Zimbabwe Cricket withdrew from the longer format following confrontations between senior players and the board in 2006.
Both wins had come against Bangladesh, once in 2011 and the other in April this year.
“It is a fantastic win. Beating a world-class team like Pakistan always gives you a great high. It shows the progress we have made over the last six months. The credit should go to our players who put up a commendable performance against them,” Taylor told dna.
And yes, the 26-year-old was celebrating in a pub with friends. However, he said he was happy to disturb his revelry to talk about the “great win”.
Zimbabwe’s last big win was against India under Andy Flower where seamer Andy Blignaut had played a crucial role in giving them a four wicket win at the Harare Sports Club.
For Taylor, this wins means a lot since it involved some of the best players in the business. “Our players showed a lot of character.
Playing against a tough team, every Zimbabwean player raised his hand and put up a good fight.
“It is special also because we had suffered a 5-0 defeat against India. And the way we fought back in this series after being 1-0 down is special,” said Taylor.
Terming the win as a “collective effort”, Taylor said: “It was the work done by both the bowlers and the batsmen. It is also special because we have been without a bowling coach for the past six months and this shows what kind of effort our bowlers have put in,” he added.
Lack of funds is taking cricket in Zimbabwe through tough times.
Players are often not getting paid their salaries. Taylor hopes this problem does not deter them from playing for the country. “What motivates us? It is love for the game. We want to play for Zimbabwe. We need to go out there and perform. Be tough and show our ability. We have survived so far. It’s not that we do not want, but we want it.
“We ask for what we deserve which is right. However, it is not all that bad what others think. But I believe with this kind of progress and results, things might improve. We could get sponsors and funds that will help us. We will be paid our salaries regularly,” he added.
(Taus Rizvi is a Principal Correspondent with DNA. A club-level cricketer, he believes cricket helps in knowing a person’s character. Taus can be followed on @rizvitaus on Twitter. The above news has been republished with permission from DNA, where it first appeared)