Vusi Sibanda faces World Cup snub

HARARE - Chamu Chibhabha, Stuart Matsikenyeri and Tawanda Mupariwa might have played themselves into Zimbabwe’s World Cup squad with reports last night suggesting selectors delayed naming the 15-man touring party as expected yesterday specifically to assess the trio during the first one-day game against touring Canada.

And under pressure to deliver, the three players, who have not featured for the national side in quite a while, all responded with brilliant individual performances in Zimbabwe A’s win against the Canadians at Harare Sports Club yesterday to almost guarantee themselves places in the World Cup squad.

Opening batsman Chibhabha and seamer Tawanda Mupariwa were particularly outstanding with a blistering century of 155 runs and an inspired four-wicket spell respectively while Matsikenyeri continued on his comeback trail with a well-played half-century.

28-year-old right-hander Chibhabha, who last played for Zimbabwe against West Indies in the Caribbean early 2013, smashed 12 boundaries and five sixes from 146 balls in Zimbabwe A’s total of 287-8 while returnee Matsikenyeri added 50 runs to the total.

Matsikenyeri, 31, is bidding to return to the side after announcing his retirement from the game in 2013.

And in defence of 287, Mupariwa had the Canadians on the ropes early, ripping through their top order to claim Zimbabwe A’s first four wickets.

The 29-yer-old often underrated medium pace bowler, who returned home late last year from playing league cricket in Ireland, has not played international cricket in five years.

Heading to the lively wickets of Australasia, Mupariwa has now raised his hand up for selection as back-up to a Zimbabwe pace attack spearheaded by Tinashe Panyangara and Tendai Chatara.

Meanwhile, experienced batsman Vusi Sibanda looks set to be the biggest casualty in Zimbabwe’s squad following a forgettable tour of Bangladesh where he recorded scores of 0, 21, 9, 17 and 37 in the five ODIs.

The emergence of Chibhabha and Matsikenyeri will push Sibanda further into the periphery ahead of the squad announcement now expected today.

In the 2011 edition, Sibanda was only included in Zimbabwe’s World Cup squad as a late replacement, alongside two others, to take the places of three injured players.

Comments (2)

Zim top five batting order please can you score at least 40 runs each per game PLEASE!!! . I dont expect us to win world cup but lest have at least 250 runs per game, Even if will lose with that score I think its an achievement for us. Good luck boys all the best.

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