1992, was the year from which India began playing bilateral series at and against Zimbabwe. Till date, India has played 28 ODIs and 4 T20s at Harare and Bulawayo of which the tourists have won 20 ODIs and all the T20s.
Although India has won many matches, the hosts had been victorious in the initial encounters (1996,1997)and one triangular series(2010) too. This might be a crucial series for both the teams as BCCI has sent a young squad to Harare. This series would nurture the young talents in the Indian squad and help them gain experience for big tournaments like the upcoming Champions Trophy. Let us recall the previous performances of both the teams.
1) Vs Zimbabwe (1992-93):(0-1)
Azharuddin and co won their first away series against Zimbabwe which comprised one ODI and a test. Sanjay Manjrekar supported by Tendulkar and Pravin Amre, scored 70 and fixed a target of 240. Srinath provided 3 crucial blows and restricted the hosts to 209.
2) Vs Zimbabwe (1996-97):(1-0)
Tendulkar failed as a captain as Zimbabwe won the two match ODI series 1-0. In the first match Campbell opted to chase and his team restricted India to 168 in 44 overs on the back of Heath Streak’s five-wicket haul. It rained again and the 2nd innings got shortened to 38 overs. But, Grant Flower’s steady knock of 61 helped the hosts to chase 136 successfully. The 2nd ODI was completely washed out.
3) Vs Zimbabwe(1997-98):(1-2)
India sealed the three match ODI series 2-1 under Azharuddin again. In the 1st ODI, Agarkar and Harbhajan picked 3 wickets each and bundled out Zimbabwe for 213. Tendulkar[127*] and Dravid built a beautiful partnership to chase down the target with ease.
In the 2nd match, Srinath and Kumble struck twice early, thereby limiting the hosts’ total to 236 in a game shortened to 45 overs a side. Ganguly[107*] and Azhar did a great job with the bat to ensure victory for their team.
Finally in the dead rubber match, it was Craig Wilshart and Andy Flower’s  show which was followed by Streak’s spell[3-33] to ensure a consolation win as their team defended 259.
4) Coca-Cola cup(2001): [ India, Zimbabwe, West Indies]
Ganguly led the team this time. Agarkar’s superb spell [3-26] along with other bowlers led to the collapse of hosts for 133. Tendulkar’s run-a-ball knock of 70*, along with Badani’s 52* drove the Men in blue to a comfortable win.
In their 2nd face-off against the hosts, Ganguly and Dravid’s[72*] heroics along with Zaheer’s four-wicket haul eased the job of chasing 235 and ascertained victory.
Against the West Indies, Debasish Mohanty’s 3 wicket haul and Tendulkar’s [81*] fireworks helped India chase down 170.
In their 2nd clash against the Windies, India chased 229 easily as a Sourav-Sachin[122*] combo did the early damage and this assured their final berth.
In the final, Darren Ganga, Carl Hooper and Chanderpaul starred to fix a huge target of 290. After a top-order collapse, Reetinder Sodhi and Sameer Dighe’s late fireworks ended in vain as Men in blue fell short of 17 runs.
5) Vs Zimbabwe (2003 WC):
During their league stage clash, Tendulkar and Dravid’s major contributions pushed the team’s total to 255, after Sehwag’s useful opening partnership with Sachin. Ganguly struck thrice while defending and Zak, Bhaji and Srinath grabbed a couple of wickets each to restrict the hosts to 172 in the World cup.
6) Videocon triangular series(2005):[ India, Zimbabwe, New Zealand]
Ganguly again led the side. In their first encounter against the Kiwis, McMillan, and McCullum’s fireworks led NZ’s total to 215. Though, Jai prakash and Irfan pathan fired, the top order collapse of Indian cricket team led to a loss with the likes of Shane Bond’s six-wicket-haul.
When they faced hosts in the 2nd match of the series, Kaif, Yuvraj and Dhoni fired off to drag their team total to 226. Irfan Pathan[5-27] and Agarkar[4-18] destroyed the Chevrons’ batting order to bundle them out for 65.
When they played their 2nd match against the Black caps, Kaif[102*] paved the team to victory after Sehwag’s fireworks by chasing a target of 279,set after valuable knocks from Scott Styris and Stephen Fleming.
In their last league match against the Chevrons, Agarkar’s 3 wicket haul along with Yuvraj and Dhoni’s[67*] stellar show helped them progress to the finals.
But, eventually they lost in the Finals against the Kiwis, as Sehwag and Kaif’s[93*] knocks ended in vain, after Nathan Astle scored a hundred for the BlackCaps and bowlers failed to explode.
7) Triangular Series (2010):[ India, Zimbabwe, Sri lanka]
Raina led the team. The team faced Zimbabwe in the 1st fixture where Rohit’s ton was overshadowed by Brendan Taylor and Craig Ervine’s knocks and the bowlers failed to defend 289.
In the 2nd match, Rohit[101*] and Kohli’s blitzkrieg knocks helped the Indian team chase down a target of 243 against the Lankans.
They lost again to the hosts as the Indian batting order failed to put up enough runs on the board and set up a target of just 195. Brendan Taylor and Hamilton Masakadza built a sensible opening partnership  to defeat them.
In a knock-out situation, they lost to the Lankans as Kohli’s fifty went down the drain with the bowlers failing to stop Dinesh Chandimal and Kapugedera while defending 268, losing a berth in the finals.
Then, they played a bilateral T20 series against the Chevrons and made a 2-0 clean sweep as Yusuf Pathan took his side to victory in the 1st game and Raina[72*] played a captain’s knock in the 2nd game.
8) Vs Zimbabwe (2013): (0-5)
Kohli took over the captaincy this time and led India to a whitewash over Zimbabwe in their home soil. Mishra was the top wicket-taker in the five match ODI series taking 18 wickets. Kohli scored a ton in the 1st game while Dhawan brought up his ton in the 2nd game. Kohli, Rohit, Raina, Rahane brought up crucial half centuries in the successive games to help their team to victory.
9) Vs Zimbabwe (2015): (0-3; 1-1)
Rahane led the young side last year and whitewashed Zimbabwe again in their home soil in the 50 over format while the T20 honors were shared. Binny took 6 wickets in the ODI series and was the leading wicket-taker and also scored his maiden fifty. Also, young guns like Rayudu and Jadhav scored maiden centuries while Vijay, Rahane and Manish scored fifties.
In the T20 series Uthappa scored two 30+ scores but only one ended up on the winning side. Mohit sharma and Axar Patel picked 4 wickets each in the T20 series.
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