ZIMBABWE TOUR OF BANGLADESH, 2018
Moor struck a vital unbeaten half-century in the Zimbabwean first-innings during the first Test. © AFP
Zimbabwe batsman Peter Moor credited his strong defense following his valuable contribution with the bat in his side’s famous win over Bangladesh in Sylhet in the first Test. Moor’s unbeaten 63 in the first innings helped Zimbabwe post 282, a total that set the tone for a famous win, Zimbabwe’s first outside their home in 17 years.
Moor looked resolute in spin-friendly conditions against an attack comprising of Taijul Islam, Mehedy Hasan and Nazmul Islam. Working with former batting coach Lance Klusener on tackling spin certainly helped, according to the 27-year-old. “I think I just want to have a strong defense when I play spin and that’s something I’m fairly capable of and that was my game plan in the first Test,” Moor told reporters on Friday, two days ahead of the second Test.
“I knew the best condition is to bat first and I wanted to make the most of it, make sure we batted the whole first day. So hopefully I can continue it in the next match,” he said.
“I think I did a lot of work with Lance Klusener, the previous batting coach, when we came across to Bangladesh. He taught me some good things about getting my bat in front of my pad. I think I worked hard at it. Obviously, Zimbabwe is not a very spin friendly condition, but I think it helped me. Whenever I have come to the sub-continent I batted well against spin.”
While Moor starred with the bat in only his seventh Test match, Brandon Mavuta made a huge impact in his debut game, picking up four wickets in the second innings to bowl his side to victory. Varying his pace against a side that is known for handling spin better than most teams at their own den proved to be the key for the legspinner.
“Yeah, confidence builds every time I get into the park,” Mavuta pointed out. “Since it was my first, getting four wickets in the second innings obviously is a massive boost of confidence to me. So pretty happy I did well in the second innings.
“They are good players of spin bowling. I’m not forgetting my processes. If my process is right, I think a good ball is a good ball whoever you are bowling to. As a spinner, that’s (varying pace) one of your strengths. You need to be able to change your pace, try to work out what the batsman is trying to do and that is something came out on that day. Wickets are different everywhere you go and luckily I played here my under 19 and so I sort of know the wicket down here.”
Having already surprised the cricketing world by taking the series lead, the Zimbabwean side is now eyeing a rare historic series triumph. But Moor is also wary of a strong fightback by the wounded home side. “It’s my first ever Test win,” Moor noted. “I think for seven of our guys in the team, it’s our first ever Test win, so it was very special for everybody. But I think a Test series win away from home is going to be even more special.
“Team is in a good place I think. We know this is also going to be very challenging. Obviously, it’s a different wicket, little bit more unpredictable wicket I think and we also know the Bangladesh side will be up for the win.”