Zimbabwe Cricket brews shocker …Snubs star Sikandar Raza

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By Sports Reporter

ZIMBABWE national cricket team all-rounder Sikandar Raza has expressed his frustration after not being awarded a new contract by the local cricket board which effectively rules him out of the forthcoming tours of South Africa and Bangladesh.

The national cricket team will play South Africa away in three ODIs and the same number of Twenty20 Internationals from September 30 to October 14 before embarking on a tour of Bangladesh where they will play three Tests and ODI matches from October 19 to November 15.

Raza, who has established himself as one of Zimbabwe most consistent performers over the last two years, is however expected to miss both tours after announcing that he had not been offered a new contract.

The 32 year-old all-rounder said his agent had not been provided with any reasons for the snub by Zimbabwe Cricket’s newly appointed managing director Givemore Makoni.

“I have been informed by my agent that the new acting MD (managing director) Mr Givemore Makoni will not offer me a contract and I will not be considered for selection for (the upcoming) South Africa and Bangladesh tours,” Raza said in a statement which he posted on his social media accounts on Friday evening.

“Reasons for that are still unknown to me and hopefully I or my agent will be informed of those soon. Hope this answers the questions to many who have been asking regarding my availability.

“In sha Allah I will keep working hard and I will remain available and committed and hopefully will be back soon! In the meantime I thank you all for your prayers and love and ask you all to keep me in your prayers,” Raza said.

Makoni, who was last week confirmed as the new ZC managing director with effect from the first of this month, was not answering his mobile phone when sought his comment.

Raza, a veteran of 10 Tests, 85 ODIs and 28 T20S has not played for Zimbabwe since being named player of the tournament during the ICC World Cup qualifier held in the country in March.

He was one of several players that missed the T-20 tri-series that involved Australia and Pakistan and the subsequent five-match one-day international (ODI) series against the latter because of a dispute with ZC over unpaid salaries.

Although Brendan Taylor, Sean Williams and Craig Ervine have since returned back to the fold, Zimbabwe will still miss the services of former skipper Graeme Cremer who is still recovering from knee surgery.

Zimbabwe will also be without promising fast bowler Blessing Muzarabani, who recently ended his international career to sign a Kolpak deal with English county side Northamptonshire.