The Zimbabwe Cricket Team representing the national team of Zimbabwe is now one of the members of International Cricket Council (ICC). It played its first Test match in the year 1992 against India at Harare. Before its inclusion as a full member with both Test and One-Day status, Zimbabwe was an associate member of ICC since 1981. It has participated all the World Cup since 1983 and apparently was in the 6 th place of the last (2003) World Cup.
Zimbabwe does not hold that much of success in international cricket apart from winning the ICC trophy three times (1982, 86 & 1990) but has produced some of the world class players including Andy Flower, Grand Flower, Heath Streak, Eddo Brandes, Murray Goodwin known for their contribution to Zimbabwean cricket. Andy Flower at one time regarded as one of the best batsman in word cricket. However, the political instability further disrupted Zimbabwean team and the current World Cup team comprises of some new but enthusiastic young players.
Placed in the Group-D along with West Indies, Pakistan and Ireland the team will start its World Cup campaign on 15 th March against Ireland. Hopefully Zimbabwe will perform better compared to other newly included cricket nations with some energetic and talented young players.
Prosper Utseya (captain), Gary Brent, Chamunorwa Chibhabha, Elton Chigumbura, Keith Dabengwa, Terrence Duffin, Anthony Ireland, Friday Kasteni, Stuart Matsikenyeri, Christopher Mpofu, Tawanda Mupariwa, Edward Rainsford, Vusumuzi Sibanda, Brendan Taylor, and Sean Williams.
Almost all are young players with a maximum experience of 60 ODIs. However, their talent makes them to put a tuff competition to any opposition. Lets have a look at some players who can be considered as key for Zimbabwean success in World Cup 2007.
Prosper Utseya – This young man has extreme talent to be good all-rounder and he already proved so in many occasion i.e. why he is now the captain of the National team. Though included as a spin (right-arm off break) bowler, he has ability to bat contributing valuable runs in the middle order. At one point he had the lowest economy rate (3.84) compared to other world class spinners in ODIs. These make him one of the key players in the World Cup squad.
Vusumuzi Sibanda – Though struggling to retain his form, he is one of the opening batsmen of Zimbabwe team known for his good timing. Apart from batting, he is also used as a part time medium pace bowler and hence one of the important player to watch out for.
Stuart Matsikenyeri – He is a useful all-rounder as an opening batsman, off-spinner and an excellent fielder. Though, he is not much consistence in batting but as a whole he can contribute a lot in all disciplines.
With inexperienced young players, Zimbabwe only needs some all-round performance to register some positive in this world cup. Lets see how they capitalize difference situations in every match they play.