Zimbabwe have been competitive throughout their tour of South Africa so far, but as soon as the Proteas bring on Imran Tahir to bowl, it’s almost as if the visitors get the heebie-jeebies…
The leg-spinner was the leading wicket-taker in the three-match ODI series with 10 scalps, which included a hat trick in the second game in Bloemfontein.
The 39-year-old Tahir continued his demolition job on the hapless Zimbabwean batsman in the first T20 international on Tuesday, claiming 5/23 to win the Man-of-the-Match award.
He was on a hat trick on two occasions in that game as well.
There are still two more T20s to come, in Potchefstroom on Friday and Benoni on Sunday, which would’ve extended the pain for the Zimbabweans.
But now those nightmares are thankfully over for our northern neighbours. Cricket South Africa announced on Wednesday that they have decided to rest Tahir for the last two matches.
“#CSAnews Imran Tahir has been released from the squad for the last two T20I's to allow an opportunity to give all the bowlers a fair go in the series. We will miss these celebrations #SAvZim #ProteaFire,” CSA tweeted.
The move is probably designed to see left-arm wrist-spinner Tabraiz Shamsi lead the spin attack after he came in for serious punishment in East London, conceding 43 runs in four overs.
#CSAnews Imran Tahir has been released from the squad for the last two T20I's to allow an opportunity to give all the bowlers a fair go in the series. We will miss these celebrations 🙌 #SAvZim #ProteaFire pic.twitter.com/utpm1e5sLN