A century opening stand and a spin-heavy bowling attack for the visitors, a record breaking century helping secure a striaghtforward chase of a big total for the home team. You'd have been forgiven for feelings of deja-vu had you watched today's match between Zimbabwe and the Netherlands at the Harare Sports Club.
Zimbabwe captain Craig Ervine won the toss and asked the Dutch to bat first, with Vikramjit Singh and Max O'Dowd aping their Nepali counterparts with a century opening stand. The partnership ended on 120 when Max O'Dowd chopped a delivery by Sikander Raza onto his stumps for 59, with Wesley Baressi also removed by Raza two overs later having contributed just four.
Singh and captain Scott Edwards then put on 96 for the fourth wicket before the former was out for 88. Edwards went on to score 83 before he was out, whilst a brief cameo from Saqib Zulfiqar contributed 34 from 31 balls. The Dutch total equalled their previous best - 315-8 against Bermuda back in 2007 - but felt below par given how Zimbabwe batted on Sunday. Raza was the pick of the Zimbabwean bowlers with 4-55.
Joylord Gumbie and Craig Ervine put on an opening stand of 80 before the latter was out for 50, whilst Gumbie and Sean Williams followed this with 62 for the second wicket before Gumbie fell for 40.
Williams at one point looked set for another century but was caught for 91, scored from 58 balls. Star of the show though was Sikander Raza who clubbed 102 from 54 balls, breaking the record for fastest ODI century by a Zimbabwean just two days after Williams broke it.
Raza's knock helped the home team secure a 6 wicket win with 9.1 overs to spare. With a record breaking century and four wickets, he was the obvious choice for player of the match.
The Dutch will next be in action on Thursday when they take on USA whilst Zimbabwe next play on Saturday against the West Indies.