STAFF REPORTER – ZIMBABWE A WILL FACE Kenya in a limited-overs series that will present the local players with a glorious opportunity to push for inclusion in the senior national side for the forthcoming ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2018 event on home soil.
The two sides will battle it out in four one-day matches and one Twenty-20 game.
Brian Vitori has been included in the Zimbabwe A squad after the International Cricket Council (ICC) cleared the left-arm fast bowler to resume bowling in international cricket following remedial work and re-assessment of his action.
All-rounder Sean Williams had been named in the side facing Kenya, but he will now miss out after he suffered a finger injury during a midweek practice session.
Donald Tiripano will captain Zimbabwe A in his hometown, with Chamunorwa Chibhabha, Regis Chakabva and Chris Mpofu being the other senior players in the squad.
Cephas Zhuwao has been rewarded for his fine form in domestic cricket and has earned a call-up alongside Wellington Masakadza, Ryan Burl, Tarisai Musakanda, Tinotenda Mutombodzi, Neville Madziva, Timycen Maruma, Prince Masvaure, Richard Ngarava and Rugare Magarira.
Ryan Murray and Brandon Mavuta, who have been touring with the senior team in Bangladesh, will also join the Zimbabwe A side in Mutare.
Manicaland Mountaineers mentor Shepherd Makunura has been appointed to stand in as Zimbabwe A coach in the absence of Douglas Hondo, who is away with the senior national team.
“I am very excited and it is a privilege and a great honour for me to take charge of the A side,” Makunura said.
He is expecting his charges to put on a good show, with most of the players looking to impress the selectors ahead of the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2018 to be hosted in Zimbabwe in March.
“We are obviously taking this series seriously as some of our players will be vying for places in the national side for the qualifiers and Kenya are also preparing for the qualifiers. So this should be a good series,” Makunura said.
The series will get underway on Monday as Zimbabwe A and Kenya clash in the first one-day match at Mutare Sports Club.
The second 50-overs match will be played on Wednesday, while the third and fourth one-dayers are set for next Friday and Sunday.
The two sides will then meet in the only Twenty-20 match of the series on 6 February.