New responsibility brings the best out of steady Hondo

Worcestershire 262 & 247 Zimbabwe 334

Douglas Hondo is set to be a busy man during Zimbabwe's 10-week tour of England. With Heath Streak, his captain and leading bowler, sidelined because of a back injury and the team's quickest bowler, Travis Friend, keeping the crowd at New Road on their toes – in the manner in which a blind javelin thrower would – Zimbabwe's limited bowling resources already give the appearance of being stretched to breaking point.

Douglas Hondo is set to be a busy man during Zimbabwe's 10-week tour of England. With Heath Streak, his captain and leading bowler, sidelined because of a back injury and the team's quickest bowler, Travis Friend, keeping the crowd at New Road on their toes – in the manner in which a blind javelin thrower would – Zimbabwe's limited bowling resources already give the appearance of being stretched to breaking point.

That elasticity remains, and Zimbabwe start today needing 176 runs to win their second consecutive match of the tour, is largely down to the efforts of the 23 year-old from Bulawayo. In Zimbabwe's first game at Edgbaston the dreadlocked medium-pacer had match figures of 7 for 75 against British Universities. And with five further victims here Hondo appears not only to have adapted nicely to English condition, but to be thriving on the responsibility tossed his way.

Hondo may have spent time in 2000 at one of his bowling camps in India, but Dennis Lillee he is not. The run up is functional rather than flowing and the action solid. The ball fails to come out of his hand at a ferocious pace but it does pitch consistently in the right area, which is something too few of the quicker bowlers have been capable of doing on this helpful surface. Bowling a tight off-stump line he troubled Worcestershire's top order and in a wicketless 10-over spell either side of lunch had figures of 0 for 21. A change in fortune came via a change of ends and it was the dismissal of Stephen Peters, for a good-looking 63, that opened the way for Zimbabwe's spinners to clear up the tail.

It is unlikely Hondo will find the pitch in 10 days time at Lord's quite as accommodating as the two he has so far played on, but if there is any life in it he will keep England's batsmen honest.

Quite what the home side were trying to do was hard to understand. Yes, the pitch was difficult to bat on but several players appeared to go out with an over ambitious intention. Vikram Solanki pulled a long-hop off the struggling Friend to midwicket, Peters carelessly cut one to cover and Gareth Batty perished attempting to hit Grant Flower straight back over his head in the first over he bowled.

It was only through the efforts of Andrew Hall, one of Worcestershire's two overseas players, that prevented the possibility of this game finishing in three days. The powerfully built South African struck the ball as cleanly as any player in the game and during his time at the crease proved two things. One, he is entertaining to watch and, two, he does not like running between the wickets. Fifty-four of his 68 runs came in boundaries.

However, Hall eventually succumbed to Flower three balls after sweeping the left-arm spinner into a nearby field when he too pulled a long hop to square-leg.

It was not just with the ball that Hondo impressed, he also played his part with the bat by frustrating a wayward bowling attack for 70 minutes during the morning session. Through resolute defence and a fair amount of fortune – he was dropped on 13 by Peters in the slips and edged several boundaries down to the unattended third-man area – he gave excellent support to Saturday's centurion Stuart Carlisle. With Streak unable to bat the pair put on 56 valuable runs for the last wicket before Carlisle was stumped looking to hit a third six in his 504-minute stay. The 31-year-old would have slept well last night. He has spent all but one delivery out in the middle.

News
i100 In this video, the late actor Leonard Nimoy explains how he decided to use the gesture for his character
News
Robert De Niro has walked off the set of Edge of Darkness
news The Godfather Part II actor has an estimated wealth of over $200m
Arts and Entertainment
Fearne Cotton is leaving Radio 1 after a decade
radio The popular DJ is leaving for 'family and new adventures'
Sport
Robbie Savage will not face a driving ban
football
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Voices
voices
Life and Style
Nearly half of all young people in middle and high income countries were putting themselves at risk of tinnitus and, in extreme cases, irreversible hearing loss
health Nearly half of all young people in middle and high income countries are at risk of tinnitus
News
It was only when he left his post Tony Blair's director of communications that Alastair Campbell has published books
people The most notorious spin doctor in UK politics has reinvented himself with remarkable success
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
Life and Style
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
James Franco and Zachary Quinto in ‘I Am Michael’
filmJustin Kelly's latest film tells the story of a man who 'healed' his homosexuality and turned to God
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Public Service Broadcasting are going it alone
music
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower