Taylor ton rescues Zimbabwe
Harare - Captain Brendan Taylor struck an unbeaten 128 as Zimbabwe recovered from a disastrous start to post 231-6 off 50 overs against New Zealand Thursday in the first of three one-day internationals.
After two Twenty20 defeats to the visitors, the home team were staring further embarrassment when losing four wickets at Harare Sports Club with just 21 runs on the scoreboard.
But Taylor and Forster Mutizwa stopped the rot with a brave fifth-wicket stand that lifted Zimbabwe to 177 runs before the latter was out for 69, caught by wicketkeeper Brendon McCullum off the bowling of James Franklin.
Taylor, a 25-year-old right-hander with a highest ODI score of 145 not out in South Africa last year, continued to sparkle in sunny, slightly cloudy conditions and slammed three sixes in a penultimate over that yielded 21 runs.
His 120-ball stand included seven fours and five sixes while Mutizwa hit three fours and one six off 98 balls as they compensated for the cheap early departures of Vusi Sibanda, Chamu Chibhabhu, Hamilton Masakadza and Tatenda Taibu.
New Zealand debutant Doug Bracewell captured the first three Zimbabwe wickets, but was less successful later in the innings, while Franklin (two wickets) and Andy McKay (one) also inflicted damage.