Hamilton Masakadza
Hamilton Masakadza (AFP Photo)

Zimbabwe captain Hamilton Masakadza has rued not putting enough runs against South Africa in the 1st ODI as they conceded a 0-1 lead in the three-match series after losing by five wickets on Sunday.

On a difficult pitch, Zimbabwe folded for 117 in 34.1 overs with Lungi Ngidi returning bowling figures of 3/19. However, the hosts stumbled in their chase losing four wickets inside 15 overs.

Heinrich Klaseen top-scored with a run-a-ball 44 to anchor the chase. Captain JP Duminy and Willem Mulder the finished off the chase with SA scoring 119/5 in 26.1 overs.

Masakadza said a total in the vicinity 180-200 would have made the contest close. “We just didn’t put enough runs on the board,” Masakadza was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo. “The wicket played a little differently to what we expected, but even after having adjusted we still didn’t bat for long enough. We needed at least another 50 or 60 to really make a game of it. One-eighty to 200 would have been really competitive.

While explaining the nature of the pitch, Masakadza said despite the testing conditons, his batsmen should have adjusted to them. “[The pitch] was sometimes slow, and sometimes bounced a little more than expected. A lot of guys got hit on the shoulder of the bat and on the gloves. But having said that, we still should have been able to adjust. As international cricketers, you come across things like that and you should be able to adjust and make use of the conditions you get,” he said.

But he did praise the bowlers who gave SA a minor scare in defense of a low score. “But the guys showed a bit of character trying to defend 118. We bowled well up front and guys really came out firing,” the 35-year-old said.