Fringe players get opportunity to impress

HARARE - Zimbabwe cricket fringe players will get an opportunity to impress selectors and fight for national team jerseys when they take on the touring Afghanistan in warm-up matches scheduled for Bulawayo.

The Zimbabwe A side is made up of mainly fringe players led by team captain Regis Chakabva, Foster Mutizwa, Tafadzwa Kamungozi, Tino Mutombodzi, Michael Chinouya and Richmond Mutumbami, who are part of the 15-man squad for the warm-up matches.

The team is set to host Afghanistan in two one day matches set for this Sunday and next Tuesday at the Bulawayo Athletic Club.

After the warm-up matches, Afghanistan will then take on the full Zimbabwe national team in four One Day Internationals that will be staged at the Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo.

The squad will also parade some of the upcoming youngsters in the form of wicketkeeper-batsman Joylord Gumbie (18), all-rounder Luke Jongwe (19), Neville Madziva (22), who is a seamer and batsman Brian Chari (22).

The two sides will then make their way to Harare after the ODIs where the Zimbabwe A side is again set to play two four-day games against the tourists with the first match scheduled to commence on July 27 at the Country Club in Highlands.

The tour by Afghanistan is meant to help Zimbabwe prepare for next month’s home series against neighbouring South Africa which will later cascade into a triangular series as Australia are expected to jet in the country later on.

Zimbabwe Cricket spokesperson, Lovemore Banda in a press statement said that South Africa are set to arrive in the country for a one-off Test match and three ODIs on August 5, the final day of the second and last four-day match.

Wicketkeeper batsman Chakabva will captain the Zimbabwe A during the matches against Afghanistan. 

“The Afghanistan tour of Zimbabwe which runs until the 5th of August will mark the start of what will be a busy international period for Zimbabwe’s senior players,” said Banda.

“On the last day of the second four-dayer, South Africa will arrive in Zimbabwe for a one-off Test match at Harare Sports Club (HSC) and three ODI matches at the Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo.

“On the eve of the last Zimbabwe-South Africa ODI, Australia will be landing in Harare to join them in a triangular ODI series which will be at the HSC (Harare Sports Club). The triangular will end with a final on the 6th of September.”

Zimbabwe A Squad for the Incoming Afghanistan Tour:

Regis Chakabva (Captain), Brian Chari, Michael Chinouya, Joylord Gumbie, Luke Jongwe, Raymond Kaia, Tafadzwa Kamungozi, Neville Madziva, Lovemore Gumunyu-Manatsa, Bright Mugochi, Forster Mutizwa, Tinotenda Mutombodzi, Richmond Mutumbami and John Nyumbu.

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