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Zimbabwe Women’s team buries Zambia in Day 2 of FIBA Zone VI

By on January 11, 2011 in News

Ladies: Zimbabwe vs Zambia

Abe Lemons, one of the most successful coaches in Oklahoma’s history once said – “There are really only two plays:  Romeo and Juliet, and put the darn ball in the basket.” The game between Zimbabwe and Zambia can be summarised in that statement. Zambia shot an ice cold 15.2% from the field as a team. You cannot win ball games if you do not convert on your attempts at the basket. Zimbabwean coach Ronald Garura started off with a line up of South African based players, who set the tempo early and went on a 20-2 run. Nothing seemed to be falling for Zambia early on as they finished the first quarter down 23-3.

Zambian coach Esaya Kambidima must have delivered an effective motivational speech during the break, because in the second quarter we saw a rejuvenated Zambian team. The second quarter started and they surprised Zimbabwe with a full court 2-2-1 press. The increased defensive intensity paid dividends for them in the second period as they fought their way back into the game scoring 12 points, while Zimbabwe scored 15. The two teams headed to the locker rooms with Zimbabwe leading 38-15 at halftime.

In the second half, Zambia came back and kept on giving the Zimbabwean team different looks on defense, alternating between a full court press and a zone defense. This strategy worked well for them as they forced Zimbabwe to commit 36 turnovers compared to their 32. However, the Zimbabwean defense was employing a clever trap in the corners and they were forcing Zambia to shoot late into the clock, thus the low shooting percentage. As much as Zambia was trying to dig themselves out of the hole they got themselves into, Zimbabwe kept the game at bay, and outscored them 16 – 11 in the period.  In addition to shooting poorly from the field, the Zambian team lost the battle of the boards as they were outrebounded 59-28. Any time a team grabs more offensive rebounds than your team’s defensive rebounds, it’s bound to be a long frustrating game. That’s giving away second chance points. Zimbabwe had 21 offensive rebounds compared to Zambia’s 20 defensive boards. So their inability to clean the glass attributed to the large scoring margin.

A bright spot for the Zambian team was P Mbale (15) who had a team leading 9 points, 4 steals and 6 rebounds in a game high 31 minutes of action.  Zimbabwe had a balanced attack, with 11 out of the 12 players scoring in this game. And the only player who didn’t have a field goal contributed 7 rebounds, so she was effective for them. Margaret Magwaro (5) had 12 points and 6 steals on 75% shooting, while Charity Chigumba (7) contributed 13 points 5 boards. Sharon Chamwarura (12) had an efficient 9 points, 6 steals, 3 assists, and 7 rebounds, but Dorcas Marondera (11) had a monster game with 8 points, and 15 rebounds.

By the time the final buzzer sounded, Zimbabwe had run away with the game to win it 69 – 33.

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