Harare - Glenn Maxwell and Mitchell Marsh both fell agonisingly short of
centuries but still helped Australia to a record one-day international
tally at the Harare Sports Club as they crushed Zimbabwe by 198 runs on
Monday.Australia's 350 for six off 50 overs beat by 10 runs the
highest total for any team at the venue in an ODI and marked a
satisfying start to preparations for the World Cup they co-host with New
Zealand early next year.
Zimbabwe could only muster 152 in reply,
bowled out with more than 10 overs left in the opening match of the
triangular series in Zimbabwe's capital.
The 25-year-old Maxwell
hit a rapid-fire 93 off 46 balls before being caught in the deep as he
swung lustily trying to hit a third successive six. He had been on
course to break team mate James Faulkner's 57-ball record for the
fastest Australian ODI hundred.
Marsh was out for 89 off 83 balls
but the century partnership between the pair contributed to a blistering
147 runs off the last 10 overs.
Maxwell included an outrageous
display of ambidextrous shot making in his innings, hitting nine fours
and clearing the boundary five times.
the most powerful shot of the innings came from Mitchell Johnson whose
six off Tinashe Panyangara in the penultimate over struck the window of
the television commentary box, shattering the glass and cutting
commentator Mpumelelo Mbangwa, the former Zimbabwe test bowler.
not seriously hurt.
Aaron Finch helped Australia get off to good
start but was caught down the leg side for 67 while fellow opener Brad
Haddin was first out for 46 just before Australia reached three figures
in the 18th over.
Zimbabwe lost their first wicket after eight
balls when Tino Mawoyo was trapped leg before by Mitchell Starc but
Hamilton Masakadza and the Pakistan-born Sikandar Raza put on 63 for the
second wicket as the home side displayed some fighting spirit.
after Raza was caught, Masakadza watched a procession of partners come
and go at regular intervals before he was seventh man out, stumped for
Johnson conceded only seven runs in the six overs he bowled, taking one wicket.
next play South Africa at the same venue on Wednesday in the second
game of the tri-series in which each country will play each other twice
with a final to follow on 6 September.
Australia, without captain
Michael Clarke who missed the game because of a hamstring strain, were
playing their first ODI since beating England in Adelaide in late
They have a minimum of 15 ODIs planned before the World Cup starts next February.
Australia 350 for six in 50 overs (G.Maxwell 93, M.Marsh 89, A.Finch 67)
Zimbabwe 152 all out in 39.3 overs (H.Masakadza 70, S.Smith 3-16)