THIRTEEN of Zimbabwe’s most experienced players including former captain Heath Streak have refused to play in the home series against Sri Lanka starting next week.
P>The players said they took the decision after a row over selection.
They said they had been told by the Zimbabwe Cricket Union (ZCU) that former test bowler Mpumelelo Mbangwa would be included in a new selection panel, as the players had suggested, only to discover that Mbangwa had not yet been approached.
The latest twist of a saga which began with Streak’s departure as team captain means Zimbabwe, already struggling to compete at test and one-day level, could face the Sri Lankans with a second-string side.
“They told us last night that Mbangwa was a selector, they told us they had phoned him and confirmed it,” a player told Reuters from Harare.
“This morning Mbangwa told someone that he discovered he was a selector on the Internet last night.”
The 13 rebel players are Streak, Stuart Carlisle, Grant Flower, Craig Wishart, Andy Blignaut, Raymond Price, Gary Brent, Sean Ervine, Travis Friend, Barney Rogers, Trevor Gripper, Richard Sims and Neil Ferreria.
The squad for the first Nissan One Day match against Sri Lanka;
Tatenda Taibu (captain), Dion Ebrahim (vice-captain), Elton Chigumbura, Stuart Matsikenyeri, Alester Maregwede, Mluleki Nkala, Waddington Mwayenga, Brendon Taylor, Douglas Hondo, Prosper Utseya, Tawanda Mpariwa, Edward Rainsford, Tinashe Panyangara, Vusimuzi Sibanda. (See also Sports story)