By DANIEL NHAKANISO
Jun 24 2011
Brendan Taylor has been named as the new Zimbabwe cricket team captain as the country braces for a return to Test cricket later this year.
Taylor takes over from all-rounder Elton Chigumbura, who had taken over from off-spinner Prosper Utseya in May last year.
The 25 year-old aggressive opening batsman was appointed following a board meeting by Zimbabwe Cricket officials yesterday and his first duty will be to lead the team against Australian and South African A sides starting Wednesday.
Taylor, who made his debut for Zimbabwe in April 2004 against Sri Lanka at the age of 18 after the withdrawal of the so-called rebel players, has 118 caps in ODIs and 10 Test match caps.
Taylor’s appointment brings to an end speculation over the team’s captaincy which has been dragging since April when Chigumbura told our sister paper, the Zimbabwe Independent that he had resigned only to make a surprise turn two weeks later.
“Yes, at one time I contemplated quitting the post but I never officially tendered my resignation,” said Chigumbura in his surprise u-turn but now it appears that instead of jumping, he has been pushed out.
Taylor’s appointment was the major highlight in the 15-man squad for the ODI tri-series which features uncapped Southern Rocks left arm seamer Brian Vitori.
Mashonaland Eagles skipper Forster Mtizwa, who has nine ODI caps after making his debut against Kenya in January 2009 finally caught the selectors’ eye and is set to make a return to the national team.
Mid West Rhinos’ middle order batsman Malcolm Waller, who has 14 ODI caps also makes a return to the squad since 2009 after a good season with the Kwekwe-based franchise.
Promising seamers Tendai Chatara and Keegan Meth also made it in the squad after finishing the season as the most lethal bowlers in the Logan Cup for both Mountaineers and Matabeleland Tuskers respectively.
After the heartbreak of missing the World Cup Hamilton Masakadza has been rewarded for his determination and is most likely going to open the batting with Taylor.
Zimbabwe Team: B Taylor (Captain), H Masakadza, V Sibanda, R Chakabva, F Mtizwa, C Ervine, P Utseya, R Price, K Meth, T Chatara, B Vitori, C Mpofu, T Taibu, M Waller, E Chigumbura