By Sports Reporter
ZIMBABWE’S preparations for the ICC Under-19 World Cup in South Africa have suffered an injury setback after the team’s technical department was forced to make a last minute change with United Kingdom-based Sakhumuzi Ndlela being drafted into the side for the injured Brandon James.
The tournament organisers, International Cricket Council (ICC) announced Tuesday that its event technical committee had given Zimbabwe the green-light for Ndlela to be drafted into the 15-man squad for the injured James.
Brandon James, who is the son of former Zimbabwe international cricketer, Wayne James suffered a rotator cuff tear on his shoulder in the buildup to the tournament which effectively ruled him out of the tournament.
The change to the squad comes just four days before the Dion Myers-captained Zimbabwe team begin their World Cup campaign with a date against Bangladesh in Potchefstroom on Saturday.
“The ICC has confirmed that the Event Technical Committee of the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup 2020 has approved Sakhumuzi Ndlela as a replacement player for Brandon James in the Zimbabwe squad and Scotland’s Lyle Robertson a replacement for Durness Mackay-Champion,’’ read part of the ICC statement.
“James has experienced a rotator cuff tear and Mackay-Champion has fractured his finger which has ruled both out of participation in the event,” the ICC said.
Despite the injury setback, Zimbabwe will head into the U-19 World Cup with high hopes of causing some upsets against the big teams after scoring victories over neighbours South Africa and New Zealand during the recent quadrangular series held in Durban.
The team which is coached by former Zimbabwe captain Prosper Utseya, clash with Bangladesh in their opening fixture at the tournament on Saturday at the JB Marks Oval.
Zimbabwe’s second fixture is against Pakistan at the Witrand Oval on 22 January with their last group opponents being Scotland at the same venue three days later.
Zimbabwe squad for ICC Under-19 Cricket World Cup: Dion Myers (captain), Wesley Madhevere (vice-captain), Emmanuel Bawa, Privilege Chesa, Gareth Chirawu, Ahomed Rameez Ebrahim, Dylan Grant, Sakhumuzi Ndlela, Tadiwanashe Marumani, Tadiwanashe Nyangani, Luke Oldknow, Dane Schadendorf, Milton Shumba, Taurayi Tugwete, Nkosilathi Nungu.