It finally comes together for Chigumbura

 Elton Chigumbura

Elton Chigumbura

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“IT’S something I am trying to achieve, anything is possible, and it’s just a matter of time before you see a hundred from me.”

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This was Elton Chigumbura’s desire to score a maiden One Day International century ahead of Zimbabwe’s limited over series against South Africa in July last year.

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That ton almost came during that series with the ODI captain scoring the best score then of 90 in the third match.

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However, in his 174th ODI – away in Pakistan last Wednesday – it all came together for Chigumbura.

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The 29-year-old blasted 117 off 95 balls as Zimbabwe put up a fight before falling to the hosts by 45 runs.

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Chigumbura, who always maintained that batting down the order diminished his chances of making big scores as he frequently ran out of partners or overs, disclosed to The Sunday Mail that he pleaded to come in to bat at four.

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The wish was granted and the hitherto elusive hundred came along albeit in a losing cause.

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“It means a lot; I am so delighted to have scored my first hundred in the most talked about series,” he said.

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“It was my request to bat there and yes I would love to make it my new position.

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“I can’t say it was frustrating not getting a hundred because where I used to bat, it was more of finishing the innings and there wouldn’t be enough time to bat.

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“However, there is no doubt; it feels good to have a century under the belt.”

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Chicken, as Chigumbura is called by teammates, reached his hundred with a six off the first ball of the 44th over bowled by Mohammad Sami.

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The skipper spoke of how he dealt with the jitters that come with approaching a maiden ton.

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“‘Stay positive, watch the ball’, that’s what I was telling myself when he was charging in. A lot of batsmen have perished in the 90’s so I just wanted to make sure that I get to 100 without much drama,” said Chigumbura who went on to bludgeon 22 runs from that Sami over.

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Chigumbura , who was suspended for two ODIs for maintaining a slow over-rate during the first one-dayer against Pakistan, reckons Zimbabwe needs to convert individual performances into match winning efforts.

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“Collectively we need to learn how to manage nerves to ensure that we get over the line. It is very important because we need to win more games to move up the rankings and as a captain I need to lead from the front, hopefully it will rub off to the rest of the team,” he said.

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Chigumbura ODI Stats Mat Inns NO Runs HS Ave SR 100 50 4s 6s ODIs 174 161 21 3585 117 25.60 82.58 1 18 295 95