Zimbabwe appoint Sikandar Raza as new T20I captain in a bid to clinch 2024 Men's T20 WC spot

Sports |  IANS  | Published :

Harare, Nov 5 (IANS) Off-spin all-rounder Sikandar Raza has been named as captain of Zimbabwe’s T20I side with an eye to clinch a spot in the 2024 Men’s T20 World Cup, to be held in West Indies and USA.

The change comes after Zimbabwe recently lost the T20I series to Namibia 3-2. Raza takes over from Craig Ervine, who will now lead the Zimbabwe side in Tests and ODIs and had captained Zimbabwe in 38 matches. Raza had previously captained Zimbabwe in four matches from 2015 to 2021, albeit coming in a stand-in skipper capacity.

Zimbabwe missed out on participating in the 2021 T20 World Cup because Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) was suspended by the ICC due to government interference in its administration. In the 2022 T20 World Cup in Australia, Zimbabwe topped their group in the first round. 

But they finished sixth in their Super 12 group standing, despite clinching a tight win over Pakistan and failed to secure automatic qualification for the 2024 edition. ZC has retained Dave Houghton as head coach, and he will also be at the Men’s Selection Panel alongside convenor David Mutendera and former captain Elton Chigumbura.

Zimbabwe’s chance of making it to the 2024 Men’s T20 World Cup will depend upon the ICC Africa region qualifiers, happening from November 22-30, with Nigeria, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Kenya and hosts Namibia being the other competing teams.

There are no changes to the women’s cricket set-up, although ZC will review the tenures of Zimbabwe Senior Women’s National Team Head Coach Gary Brent and Captain Mary-Anne Musonda after the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Africa Qualifier set for Uganda in December.

Blessing Ngondo comes in as the Cricket Committee’s new Chairman, with Hamilton Masakadza, Kenyon Ziehl, Russell Tiffin, Julia Chibhabha, Houghton and Chigumbura being the other members.

With the U19 Men’s Cricket World Cup happening in Sri Lanka next year, Prosper Utseya has been retained as the coach of the team. Chigumbura will be the convener of the Men’s U19 selection panel and is joined by Jestinos Gwatiringa, Pollock Mubhobho, Kyle Jarvis and Leslie Makirimani.



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