Lara steers Windies home

Newly-crowned West Indian skipper Brian Lara has steered his side to a gruelling five-wicket win over Zimbabwe in the first one day international.

Chasing Zimbabwe's paltry total of 9-151, Lara smashed an unbeaten 40 as the West Indies sealed the victory with 11.4 overs to spare.

Lara, appointed to his third tenure as captain before the series, faced 43 balls and hit three fours and a six during his time at the crease.

Justice Chibhabha top-scored with 55 for Zimbabwe after it lost the toss and was put into bat on a pitch showing signs of dampness.

Captain Terry Duffin (26) and Brendan Taylor (25) were the only other Zimbabwean batsmen to contribute double-figure scores.

Chibhabha, 19, and playing in only his second one-day international, faced 98 balls and hit five fours as he steered his side out of early trouble.

Medium-pacer Dwayne Smith, off spinner Chris Gayle and fast bowlers Jerome Taylor and Dwayne Bravo took two wickets each.

The West Indies was reduced to 4-77 in 23rd over before Lara, who came in at number six, took control of the rest with a commanding performance.

The veteran skipper shared a 44-run fifth-wicket stand with Danesh Ramdin, who scored 37, for West Indies' biggest partnership.

Off spinner Prosper Utseya proved to be the shining light for Zimbabwe, keeping the struggling side's hopes alive with a probing spell of 3-35 from 10 overs.

Utseya also ran out Ramnaresh Sarwan for 14 in the 12th over with direct hit on the stumps at the striker's end from square leg.

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