CONSISTENCY could prove to be a factor in the progress of the Zimbabwe national Under 19 cricket team when they join 16 other nations in the ICC Youth World Cup which starts on Sunday in Bangl
Half of the players in the 14-member Zimbabwe squad were in the national Under 14 team that represented the country in the Standard Bank Auto Club Week in South Africa four years ago.
Junior cricket in Zimbabwe has churned out many talented players through schools and the Zimbabwe Cricket Union (ZCU) programmes. These players have gone on to break into the senior national team becoming vital members.
Six players in the current senior team were groomed from the Under 19 team that participated at the 2002 Junior World Cup tournament hosted by New Zealand.
Two of them – national team vice-captain Tatenda Taibu and all-rounder Sean Ervine – are now integral members of the team.
The other players who have been capped are batsmen and spin bowlers Stuart Matsikinyeri and Charles Coventry, pace bowler Waddington Mwayenga and record-breaking batsman Hamilton Masakadza, the youngest player ever to score a century on Test debut for his country.
At least 16 Under 19 players are now waiting in the wings to get selectors’ nod.
Some players in the current side are expected to win selection into the national team. These include opening batsman and wicket keeper Brendan Taylor, team captain Tino Mawoyo, spin bowler Prosper Utseya, pace bowler Tinashe Panyangara and all-rounder James Cameron.