Chennai, Feb 12 (PTI) South Africa''s Pakistan-bornspinner Imran Tahir made an impression with a three-wickethaul as Zimbabwe were bundled out for a paltry 152 in theirWorld Cup warm-up match at the M A Chidambaram stadium heretoday.
Opting to bat, Zimbabwe batsmen, barring opener BrendanTaylor (40) and lower middle order Sean Williams (35), failedto apply themselves to the task and kept losing wickets atregular intervals.
South African attack was not extraordinary but theirbowlers maintained decent line and length and waited for therivals to make mistakes.Captain Graeme Smith used as many as eight bowlers,including Tahir, rotating them in short spells. Keyall-rounder Jacques Kallis, recovering from a rib injury, wason the field for sometime, though he did not bowl as earlierindicated by Smith.
Fast bowler Morne Morkel (3 for 16) and Tahir (3 for 35)were the chief wicket-takers for South Africa.
Taylor, who looked positive from the start, added 49 runsfrom 59 balls in 42 minutes for the first wicket with CharlesCoventry (21) before the latter holed out to Tahir at mid-onscooping the ball from Morkel.
Morkel struck again in the very next ball sending backTatenda Taibu who was caught by Smith in the first slip in the10th over.
Then it was the turn of Robin Peterson to deal anotherdouble blow when he dismissed Greg Lamb (11) and captain EltonChigumbura (0) in the 19th over.
Trying to cut a ball, Lamb only managed an edge towicketkeeper A B de Villiers. Chigumbura was trapped plumb inthe front going for a back-foot defensive shot.
The fall of quick wickets arrested the flow of runs andsoon Taylor too fell -- caught by de Villiers off the bowlingof Tahir, who has been billed as the secret weapon of SouthAfrica.
Williams resurrected the Zimbabwean innings adding 46runs for the seventh wicket with Regis Chakabva. He showedgrit in attacking Tahir early on with two successiveboundaries.
But once the pair was broken, it became a procession ofZimbabwean batsmen.
The side lost four wickets in the space of five overs forthe addition of just 11 runs, disappointing the good crowdthat had thronged the stadium despite it being a friendlymatch.
Tahir, on whom Smith had good words on his abilities,lived up to the captain''s expectations maintaining a steadyline and length.