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HomeCricketPreview: 1st Test - Zimbabwe v West Indies

Preview: 1st Test – Zimbabwe v West Indies



Last Updated on 7 years by Charbel Coorey

Zimbabwe v West Indies, 1st Test, Bulawayo

Low key series? Try telling that to Zimbabwe and West Indies fans.
Both teams have plenty to prove. For Zimbabwe, they would love to mark the return of one of their most favourite sons Brendan Taylor, as well as Kyle Jarvis with a win. This is especially after such a positive tour of Sri Lanka, where they nearly pulled off an upset in the Test match. For Zimbabwe to see a rise in the rankings in the future, it’s times like these where they need to stand up and be counted.
It’s a similar story for the West Indies, after taking England to a decider in their own backyard recently. The men from the Caribbean will be looking to build on that famous win in Leeds, and a tussle in unfamiliar conditions against a keen Zimbabwe will be a good test for the West Indies. Can Shai Hope give the West Indies more hope again? Can Kemar Roach and Shannon Gabriel threaten Zimbabwe with their pace?
This contest promises to be quite interesting.

Key to a Zimbabwe win

Get ahead in the Test Match.

In the England series, West Indies struggled in the first and third Tests as they fell behind early. Zimbabwe were ahead of Sri Lanka for much of that recent Test in Sri Lanka, but couldn’t finish the job.

However, do the West Indies have the ability to fight back from behind here? This is Zimbabwe’s best chance. The likes of Kyle Jarvis and Graeme Cremer will be difficult to handle from in front. Brendan Taylor being back in the team can help Zimbabwe push ahead of their opponents.

A great opportunity awaits.

Key to a West Indies win

West Indies’ bowlers + Shai Hope.
West Indies face a challenge penetrating the Zimbabwe lineup on what is expected to be a decent batting track on the first few days at least. Jason Holder’s accuracy can work well with Kemar Roach and Shannon Gabriel’s pace, while Devendra Bishoo is capable of taking wickets. Just ask Pakistan in Dubai last year – the Windies will need Bishoo more here.
Shai Hope also holds a lot of responsibility. Top players around the world have struggled in England – i.e. Virat Kohli – but Shai Hope was tremendous. He was the top run scorer from both sides, and the West Indies will be hoping for more of the same.

Possible line ups:

Zimbabwe: 1 Solomon Mire, 2 Hamilton Mazakadza, 3 Craig Ervine, 4 Brendan Taylor, 5 Sean Willians, 6 Sikandar Raza, 7 Regis Chakabva (wk), 8 Graeme Cremer (c), 9 Tendai Chisoro, 10 Kyle Jarvis, 11 Chris Mpofu
West Indies: 1. Kraigg Brathwaite, 2 Kieran Powell, 3 Kyle Hope, 4 Shai Hope, 5 Roston Chase, 6 Jermaine Blackwood, 7 Shane Dowrich (wk), 8 Jason Holder (c), 9 Devendra Bishoo, 10 Kemar Roach, 11 Shannon Gabriel
Stats & Facts:

  • Shai Hope is coming off the back of 375 runs in three Tests in England, at an average of 75.00
  • Zimbabwe have won just one Test in Bulawayo – way back in 2001 v Bangladesh
  • West Indies are undefeated in Tests v Zimbabwe
  • Graeme Cremer nearly took his first 10-wicket haul against Sri Lanka earlier this year (9/275)


Very tough to choose a winner here. Zimbabwe can be competitive at home, especially against a team ranked near them. West Indies showed great promise in England, and would want to build on it.
The West Indies will win this in a tight match, considering they have just that little more firepower with their quicks, and with their batsmen wanting to prove a point.
Charbel Coorey
Charbel Coorey
Charbel is the owner & founder of, based in Sydney, Australia. He started the website to fulfill his love for the game of cricket. Charbel has also been featured on other publications including OP India, Times of India, and The Roar, among others. For any story tips or questions, you can contact Charbel at

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