Murali Vijay and Ajinkya Rahane out on 112 for the first wicket © AFP
Murali Vijay and Ajinkya Rahane out on 112 for the first wicket © AFP

Half-centuries from Ajinkya Rahane and Murali Vijay ensured India finish at 271 for 8 in 50 Overs against Zimbabwe in the second One-Day International (ODI) at Harare. Openers Rahane and Vijay started out cautiously as they were determined to get off to a good start and that is exactly what they did. Neville Madziva was the pick of the bowlers for Zimbabwe, finishing with four wickets to his name and thereby registering his best ODI figures. Live Blog: India vs Zimbabwe 2015, 2nd ODI at Harare

India ensured that they did not lose wickets early and batted very sensibly. Rahane went to his eight  ODI fifty along the way. The openers put on 112 for the first wicket, before Rahane tried to turn the face of the bat off the bowling of Chamu Chibhabha, with Sikandar Raza taking the catch at covers. Vijay too went for an extravagant shot as he looked to clear the deep square leg fence, but not before he got to his highest ODI score of 72. Live Scorecard: India vs Zimbabwe 2015, 2nd ODI at Harare

Zimbabwe struck back after that with the wickets of Rayudu and Tiwary, which got Robin Uthappa and Stuart Binny into the crease. Uthappa was bowled by a yorker by Madziva for just 11, continuing his poor run of form. Kedar Jhadav then joined Binny and the duo toiled hard a late flourish got India to a good total. Binny fell for a 16-ball 25 and Jhadav too fell for a 13-ball 16 in the final over of the innings.

If Zimbabwe like they did in the previous match, they can certainly possess a threat. However, they will have to try and go over the line this time, unlike the fist ODI, where they fell four runs short

Earlier, Zimbabwe won the toss and decided to bowl first, just like they did in the first ODI. India did not make any changes in their playing XI, but Zimbabwe got Madiza in place of Tinashe Panyangara. India lead the three-match series 1-0.

Brief scores

India 271 for 8 (Ajinkya Rahane 63, Murali Vijay 72; Neville Madziva 4 for 49, Sikandar Raza 1 for 25) vs Zimbabwe

Full scorecard

(Pramod Ananth is a reporter at CricketCountry. He has represented Karnataka table tennis under-15, and is a hardcore supporter of Liverpool FC. His Twitter handle is @pramz)