HARRE, Zimbabwe - A slew of records tumbled as Australia took on Zimbabwe in the Twenty20 tri-series at Harare Sports Club on Tuesday, with the tourists' captain Aaron Finch setting a record score in Twenty20 Internationals.
Finch powered his way to 172 in 223 run partnership with fellow opener D’Arcy Shor, another world record as Australia reached 229 for two - the highest total ever scored against Zimbabwe in a T20I. Finch cracked his first six in the fourth over of the morning, and with his third he brought up a 22-ball half century. That was his fastest in Twenty20 internationals.
Australia took 75 from the Powerplay, with Finch doing the bulk of the scoring while fellow opener D’Arcy Short was content to turn the strike over to his big-hitting partner. When the team hundred came up halfway through the 10th over, Finch had 74 runs to his name, while Short had managed just 19 from the 24 balls he had faced.
Short soon began to find the middle of his own bat, though, and took a brace of sixes off Ryan Burl’s legspin to take his strike rate over a run a ball. Finch, meanwhile, brought up his second T20I hundred at the end of the 14th over, taking just 50 deliveries.
Four overs later, his 15th four took Australia’s score to 200, and Finch then moved beyond 150 with a swipe to deep midwicket. He moved beyond the previous world record T20I high score of 156, which he set against England 2013, with his ninth six.
Short eventually fell swinging across the line at fast bowler Blessing Muzarabani to be caught for 46, while Finch fell in bizarre circumstances in the final over. Stretching out to hit a full delivery from Muzarabani, he over-balanced and kicked his own stumps to be out hit wicket. While Muzarabani finished with two wickets to his name, left-arm spinner Tendai Chisoro was the only bowler to escape severe punishment.