Injured Sean Williams and Craig Ervine ruled out of T20I series against India
Zimbabwe’s preparations for the upcoming T20 series against India were dealt a severe blow with all-rounder Sean Williams and batsman Craig Ervine being ruled out with injuries, ESPN Cricinfo reports.
Ervine had been racing against time to be fit in time for the three-match T20I series which begins at Harare on Friday, after suffering a hamstring injury during the first ODI while Williams, who incidentally replaced Ervine in the playing eleven for the second ODI, had fractured his finger in the warm-ups prior to that game.
Though Zimbabwe’s interim coach and former South African fast bowler Makhaya Ntini had vowed to teach the Indian side a fitting lesson for sending across what was an under-strength side, the African minnows endured a disappointing ODI series whitewash at the hands of the visitors, with MS Dhoni’s men winning each of the three matches in commanding style.
The recent injury setbacks coupled with the fact that Tinashe Panyangara, arguably their best bowler over the past year or so, had already been ruled out of the matches against India with a back injury, does seem to have made the task at hand all the more difficult for Zimbabwe. Skipper Graeme Cremer, however, is confident of putting up a better performance in the shortest format of the game.
"We're not going to reflect too much on the one-dayers, we are just going to look to hit the ground running in T20s," Cremer said after the ODI series loss. "We're going to try our best to turn things around, there's not much else I can say to that."
Cremer is backing on the memories of Zimbabwe’s shock win over the same opposition last year to serve as an inspiration for a team desperately lacking in confidence.
"I think it's motivating enough that the last T20 we played against India here is the one we won," he said. "It's motivating enough knowing how it felt when we won the last time, how good the crowd was and how we enjoyed that. Guys are looking forward to doing well and obviously having a disappointing one-day series makes us even more motivated to do well in the T20."
Here’s the 18-man Zimbabwe squad for the T20I series in full:
Graeme Cremer (capt), Sikandar Raza, Brian Chari, Tendai Chatara, Chamu Chibhabha, Elton Chigumbura, Neville Madziva, Timycen Maruma, Hamilton Masakadza, Wellington Masakadza, Peter Moor, Tapiwa Mufudza, Tinotenda Mutombodzi, Richmond Mutumbami (wk), Taurai Muzarabani, Vusi Sibanda, Donald Tiripano, Malcolm Waller