TAYLOR SALUTES FANS
Wicketkeeper Brendan Taylor has called on Zimbabwe Cricket to consider having free entry to international matches for fans in future home tours.
Taylor made the remarks as Zimbabwe have so far played their 2018 ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier games to full houses at Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo and Harare Sports Club.
The Qualifier games are free entry for fans courtesy of the International Cricket Council and Taylor reckons this has had an impact on Zimbabwe’s performances.
“We have had extremely close games and managed to pull it off and certainly I think the crowd has played a part,” Taylor said.
On Monday, Zimbabwe lost to the Windies by four wickets but the passion, the atmosphere and huge turnout from fans at Harare Sports Club was out of this world.
With this, Taylor –who scored 138 against the Windies – reckons it would do a world of wonders for Zimbabwe players should the responsible local authorities open the gates for free to fans in future home tours.
“It’s been great having a full house here at Harare Sports Club and I think going forward why not open the gates to the public and let them come in.
“They are passionate about watching us play and they are very supportive of us. Instead of charging a dollar or two dollars, which to them is a lot of money, get them in for free.”
Monday’s defeat to the Windies was Zimbabwe’s first defeat of the ongoing tournament and more so the first in 36 years thus ending a 29-match winning streak in this particular tournament.
A win over the Windies would have taken Zimbabwe to the World Cup but now the local boys have to beat the United Arab Emirates under any circumstance.
Taylor added that they will repay the fans’ efforts and dedication by surpassing the UAE and qualify to the Qualifier final and subsequently the 2019 World Cup at Harare Sports Club tomorrow.
“It’s great having them here and it certainly helps the players and we want to repay that by putting in a big performance on Thursday and moving forward.
“There is nothing better than playing in front of your home crowd with a packed house so I would like to see it and hopefully that happens. It’s been fantastic, it’s been pretty special for us to have it (Qualifier) at home,” he said.
On the other hand, the Windies and Scotland will cancel out each other at Harare Sports Club today.