Rising Stars announce squad for UK tour
Zimbabwe Cricket has announced a 17 strong squad for its Rising Stars Academy, which will tour the UK during the English summer season.
It will be the second intake of players following the inaugural tour of 2017 and the inclusion of the Rising Stars in a revamped Logan Cup, Zimbabwe’s first-class competition.
Included among those who have already seen domestic action this season are all-rounder Clive Chitumba and left-arm spinner Herbert Chikomba, who represent the Mountaineers and Eagles franchises respectively. In an interesting move Carl Mumba, who made his Test debut in 2016, has been selected for the second year running as he seeks to recover from minor knee surgery.
Also included are two players from the under 19 World Cup squad, which has recently returned from New Zealand: skipper Liam Roche and batsman Jayden Schadendorf.
All players in the squad will be aged between 19 and 22 years old, with the ultimate aim of producing a core of international cricketers for the future. In a slight change to 2017 the tour will be a more compact three months, although like last year will include matches against county 2nd XIs, academy and representative sides.
Tatenda Taibu, former Zimbabwe captain and current convener of selectors, selected the squad alongside Rising Stars’ coach Stuart Matsikenyeri, following a series of trials in major towns and cities across Zimbabwe.
Speaking about the 2018 intake, Taibu commented: “As well as their cricketing talent, this group of players have shown themselves to be potential leaders and ambassadors of the future. We are very happy to be giving them this opportunity to prove their credentials as players and as people.
“Selection has not been easy, but ultimately we believe we have got the right balance of relative experience, attitude and skills to help the players forge a successful pathway from U19s cricket through to a career in the professional game. The Rising Stars Academy is a fantastic opportunity for young cricketers in Zimbabwe and the emphasis is very much on them to take full advantage.”
Once again the squad will be based at Lancashire’s Aigburth ground in Liverpool, where they will have full use of the practice facilities and gym, and matches will take place throughout UK.
An additional five players have also been put on standby and will all take part in further training programmes as part of the Rising Stars academy following the UK tour.
The squad in full:
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