Chigumbura to miss first match, major blow

Posted by admin on October 12, 2007

Zimbabwe will be without the services of Elton Chigumbura for the first 4-day match against Sri Lanka A. The all-rounder, quickly developing into one of world class calibre, has injured his shoulder.

Chigumbura is the only genuine quick in the Zimbabwe squad, on occasion reaching speeds of up to 140km.

His absence would see both Christopher Mpofu and Tawanda Mupariwa play in the first match should the selectors go with three pace bowlers (the other being Gary Brent). Timycen Maruma is only an outside chance, with Prosper Utseya, Sean Williams and Keith Dabengwa leading the spin department.

"Elton is likely to miss the first game against Sri Lanka as he is not feeling well," Robin Brown, the Zimbabwe coach, told The Herald (Zimbabwe).

Captain, Prosper Utseya was confident his side could continue their good run of form, telling The Herald, "The preparations have been going on well and recently we beat our A side convincingly and we are also expecting to build from our win against Australia in the Twenty20. So we are looking forward to posting positive results in these games though we have a few setbacks in the form of injuries with Hamilton nursing a finger injury while Elton can't bowl as he has problems with his left shoulder."

Chigumbura's absence would leave a large hole in the middle order, as he is one of the few Zimbabwe batsmen prepared to take on the bowlers, and consistently clear the ropes.

Zimbabwe XI (probable): V. Sibanda, B. Taylor (wk), C. Chibhabha, T. Taibu, S. Williams, S. Matsikenyeri, K. Dabengwa, G. Brent (vice capt), P. Utseya (capt), C. Mpofu, T. Mupariwa

Meanwhile, in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe Provinces take on Gauteng in the South African Airways Provincial tournament. Zimbabwe Provinces were disappointing on their first day, all out for 169. Only Regis Chakabva provided resistance, with 64.