Photo Credit: Zimbabwe Cricket
Gary Ballance has been named in Zimbabwe’s squad for their two-match Test series against the West Indies that gets underway at Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo on Saturday.
The left-handed batter recently committed to playing for his country of birth after he had previously featured in 23 Tests for England, scoring 1 498 runs with four centuries and seven fifties at an average of 37.45.
In the absence of regular captain Sean Williams who is recovering from a fractured finger, Craig Ervine will lead Zimbabwe in the series.
The home side will also be without all-rounders Sikandar Raza and Ryan Burl who are fulfilling franchise commitments abroad, while pacemen Tendai Chatara and Blessing Muzarabani are recuperating from thigh injuries.
Their absence has opened up opportunities in the Zimbabwe squad for players who have been enjoying good form in the domestic first-class competition, the Logan Cup, among them the uncapped quartet of wicketkeeper-batters Tafadzwa Tsiga and Joylord Gumbie as well as opening batters Kudzai Maunze and Tanunurwa Makoni.
The trio of top-order batter Innocent Kaia and seamers Bradley Evans and Tanaka Chivanga is also in line to make their Test debuts after they were picked to face the West Indies.
Donald Tiripano and Chamunorwa Chibhabha have been recalled to add some experience to the side, while Victor Nyauchi, Wellington Masakadza, Richard Ngarava, Brandon Mavuta and Milton Shumba will be looking to make an impression in the longest version of the game.
The first Test is scheduled for 4-8 February, with the second pencilled in for 12-16 February.
ZIMBABWE SQUAD FOR TEST SERIES VERSUS WEST INDIES:
Ballance Gary, Chibhabha Chamunorwa, Chivanga Tanaka, Ervine Craig (captain), Evans Bradley, Gumbie Joylord, Kaia Innocent, Makoni Tanunurwa, Masakadza Wellington, Maunze Kudzai, Mavuta Brandon, Ngarava Richard, Nyauchi Victor, Shumba Milton, Tiripano Donald, Tsiga Tafadzwa
ZIMBABWE VERSUS WEST INDIES TEST SERIES SCHEDULE:
|1st Test||4-8 February||Queens Sports Club||10.00 am (CAT)|
|2nd Test||12-16 February||Queens Sports Club||10.00 am (CAT)|