Mangongo defends Kamungozi selection

HARARE - Assistant coach Steve Mangongo has defended the inclusion of Tafadzwa Kamungozi in Zimbabwe’s ICC World Twenty20 squad seven years after the leg-spinner last played international cricket.

The Southern Rocks leg-spinner was the major surprise in the 15-man travelling party, which is in camp ahead of the tournament, which begins in Bangladesh on March 26.

He last played the last of his four one-day internationals in 2006 and has no international T20 experience.

Kamungozi comes in as direct replacement for first-choice leggie Graeme Cremer, who has retired from the game in frustration to pursue a career in golf.

“Tafadzwa performed well when we hosted South Africa A and Sri Lanka A (in 2012), he is an unorthodox leg-spinner and his strength is his accuracy,” he said.

Mangongo, who deputises former Zimbabwe international Andy Waller, also expressed concern over the pre-tournament form of the team’s pace bowlers. 

“There’s a bit of worry with pace bowlers. They need to improve on grouping deliveries; in subcontinent a slight miss of lengthy you get punished.”

He however, was happy with the batting department’s preparedness.

“It is all hard work, the guys are in good shape and they have been taking of their game,” Mangongo told the Daily News yesterday.

“We are working on strike rotation by batters, we are happy with how hard they are hitting the ball and their boundary options.”

Squad: Brendan Taylor (capt), Sikandar Raza Butt, Tendai Chatara, Elton Chigumbura, Tafadzwa Kamungozi, Timycen Maruma, Hamilton Masakadza, Shingi Masakadza, Natsai M’shangwe, Tinashe Panyangara, Vusi Sibanda, Prosper Utseya, Brian Vitori, Malcolm Waller, Sean Williams.

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