Williams back in action for Zim

BULAWAYO - All-rounder Sean Williams is poised to make his first appearance when Zimbabwe take on Hong Kong in a World Cup Qualifier encounter set for Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo this morning.

The left-handed middle-order batsman missed the locals’ two Group B matches- a 116-run win over Nepal and a drama-filled two-run triumphant over rivals Afghanistan in Bulawayo as he was still recovering from a finger injury he picked while practicing in the nets ahead of the Qualifiers in January.

He broke his left finger during a batting practice with his franchise Matabeleland Tuskers in Bulawayo and was ruled out of action for six weeks.

His return will come as a welcome boost for the side that is looking to cement its Super 6 berth with a win against a stubborn Hong Kong that easily dismissed Afghanistan by 30 runs via the Duckworth Lewis method win in their last match.

The 31-year-old player made his last ODI appearance in July last year away against Sri Lanka in the fifth and final match which Zimbabwe won by three wickets to record their first ever series triumph against the Asian side in their own backyard.

Zimbabwe on Thursday were dealt a heavy blow after seamer Brian Vitori was suspended from bowling with immediate effect by the ICC after he was reported for an illegal bowling action against Nepal and Afghanistan. He has since been replaced by Rising Stars pacer Richard Ngarava.

Team captain Graeme Cremer on Thursday could not hide his frustration at the developments.

“...Very upset, he (Vitori) has worked so hard to get back on the field. Feel sorry for what he has to go through again. He is one guy that does not deserve this,” Cremer said.

And to rub salt to the wound, the team is still awaiting on pace bowler Tendai Chatara who sustained a shoulder injury.

Zimbabwe are second in Group B with four points from two matches behind leaders Scotland who have won all their three matches and are on six points.

Hong Kong are in third place with two points with a single win in two matches while Afghanistan and Nepal anchor the log with identical zero points.

In Group B, Ireland top the standings with four points from two matches and are tied on points with West Indies and the United Arab Emirates in their respective second and third places but have a superior net run rate over their counterparts.

Papua New Guinea and Netherlands are yet to get off the mark after three and two round of matches respectively.

ZIMBABWE SQUAD: Graeme Cremer (captain), Tendai Chatara, Tendai Chisoro, Craig Ervine, Kyle Jarvis, Hamilton Masakadza, Solomon Mire, Peter Moor, Blessing Muzarabani, Sikandar Raza, Brendan Taylor, Richard Ngarava, Malcolm Waller, Sean Williams and Cephas Zhuwao, Heath Streak (coach)

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