Zimbabwe Under-19 coach Prosper Utseya is looking forward to the ICC Under-19 Men’s Cricket World Cup 2022 which he sees as a great platform for the country’s future international stars to emerge.
The forthcoming edition of the biennial global youth tournament will be staged in the West Indies from 14 January to 5 February.
Zimbabwe’s squad of 15 players left for the 16-team event on Boxing Day and arrived in Barbados on Monday night.
“It’s a prestigious event that gives a platform for players to showcase their talent at a youth World Cup which helps them kick-start their international careers and, more importantly, to make their families and nation proud,” Utseya said.
Among the players he will be banking on is team captain Emmanuel Bawa, the only player in the current side who featured at the last ICC Under-19 Men’s World Cup 2020 in South Africa where he scored Zimbabwe’s only century at the event and became the fourth Zimbabwean ever to record a hundred in the history of the tournament.
Matthew Welch, who was a non-travelling reserve for the last edition, has made the cut this time round.
The squad also includes Steven Saul, Brian Bennet and Tendekai Mataranyika who, together with Welch, were part of the Zimbabwe Emerging side that toured Namibia for a limited-overs series in August this year.
Although Zimbabwe’s preparations for the ICC Under-19 Men’s Cricket World Cup 2022 were hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic, Utseya believes his team will make a mark at the tournament.
“We are remaining positive and looking to go as far as possible in the tournament,” he said.
Zimbabwe are in Group C alongside Afghanistan, Pakistan and Papua New
Utseya’s starlets will open their campaign against Afghanistan at the Diego Martin Sporting Complex in Trinidad and Tobago on 16 January.
They will then take on Papua New Guinea at the same venue on 20 January.
In their last group fixture, Zimbabwe will face Pakistan at the Queens Park Oval, also in Trinidad and Tobago, on 22 January.
The tournament format will see the top two teams from each of the four
groups advance to the Super League, while the remaining teams feature in the Plate competition.
ZIMBABWE SQUAD FOR ICC U19 MEN’S CRICKET WORLD CUP 2022:
Emmanuel Bawa (Eastbourne College, United Kingdom), Brian Bennet (Peterhouse Boys), David Bennet (Peterhouse Boys), Victor Chirwa (Kadoma Cricket Club), Ngcini Dube (Falcon College), Alex Falao (Prince Edward School), Tendekai Mataranyika (Peterhouse Boys), Tashinga Makoni (Wise Owl School), Connor Mitchell (Maritzburg Boys High School, South Africa), Steven Saul (Peterhouse Boys), Matthew Schonken (Hellenic Academy), Panashe Taruvinga (St Charles Boys High School, South Africa), Matthew Welch (St John’s College), Rogan Wolhuter (Falcon College), Ngenyasha Zvinoera (Cardiff University, United Kingdom)
Aishah Chibanda (Churchill School), Luyanda Mtomba (Siziba High School), Tadiwanashe Mwale (Durham Cathedral, United Kingdom), Rugg Declan (Ruddley College, United Kingdom), Tanaka Zvaita (Wrekin College, United Kingdom)