After failing to qualify for the ODI World Cup 2023 and the T20 World Cup 2024, Zimbabwe Cricket has decided to make huge changes to its setup. The board has decided to hire good coaches for both the men’s and women’s teams whereas former player Prosper Utseya has resigned from his position as the head coach of the U19 side. Former first-class batsman Walter Chawaguta will be coaching the senior women’s team.
Walter Chawaguta was named as the interim head coach of the men’s team for the tour of Sri Lanka which was held in January 2024. Chawaguta was given an interim contract after Dave Houghton stepped down from his post following the debacle in the ODI World Cup and the T20 World Cup qualifiers.
Zimbabwe Cricket decides to go under complete revamp after World Cup failures
The board of Zimbabwe Cricket met on Sunday, February 11, which was headed by Lloyd Mhishi. The committee released a statement that was set for the probe after Zimbabwe failed in back-to-back World Cup qualifiers. The statement read, “Adopted the comprehensive report presented by a committee of inquiry that was established to probe Zimbabwe’s World Cup qualification failures as well as to review ZC’s cricket affairs structure”.
“The three-member Committee, chaired by Lloyd Mhishi, presented its report to the board after gathering input from various stakeholders, both internal and external… the board resolved to adopt the report in its entirety and to immediately implement the committee’s recommendations,” the statement further added.
The Zimbabwe Cricket Board has also accepted a few recommendations which include the complete restructuring and transformation of its cricket affairs department and its personnel. The recommendations further include redesigning the domestic and development pathways, posting job openings for head coaches of the U19 and senior men’s national teams, and reorganizing the first-class coaching staff.
Zimbabwe Cricket has also decided to set up a national academy and also indoor training facilities in all their first-class provinces.
Zimbabwe as a cricketing nation has overcome a lot of development in the past few years. The team has been able to shine with their performance and has given tough competition to big teams. However, Zimbabwe recently lost to Namibia and Uganda and missed out on qualifying for the 2024 T20 World Cup from the Africa region. Zimbabwe managed to win four of the six games and finished third in the standings.
Other than the T20 World Cup in 2024, following their defeat to Scotland in the Super Six round of the competition, The Chevrons were also unable to secure a spot in the 2023 ODI World Cup. Despite winning four of their five games and topping Group A, Zimbabwe were unable to advance over the last hurdle.
The Chevrons defeated Pakistan and other elite teams at the 2022 T20 World Cup with an impressive show of play. Zimbabwe also presented fierce opposition to other teams, and at one point it prevented Pakistan from advancing to the tournament’s semifinals.
The Chevrons have recently invited India for a five-match T20I series which will be held just after the T20 World Cup 2024.