ZIMBABWE cricket have suffered yet another blow as leg spinner Graeme Cremer has been ruled out of the World T20 tournament with a broken arm.
Cremer took a blow on the arm from a bouncer in Monday’s WT20 preparatory game in which Zimbabwe suffered a 10 wicket defeat at the hands of West Indies in Dubai.
The specialist bowler becomes Zimbabwe’s third player to be ruled out of the biannual tournament due to injury following all-rounder Luke Jongwe, who has been sidelined by a head injury and Neville Madziva, who has also been declared unfit to play in the global tournament.
There were some unconfirmed reports indicating that Craig Ervine, Chamunorwa Chibhabha and Donald Tiripano could be joining the squad as replacements.
The defeat was the Chevron’s second to West Indies in three days and it was also their last game in Dubai where they also played two games against a local club winning both matches.
However, the Chevrons got a reality check when they received a severe battering in the second game against West Indies.
Zimbabwe had tallied 152 for seven off their 20 overs, with the stylish Vusi Sibanda top-scoring with 64 and Sikandar Raza getting 23.
The right-handed Sibanda, opening the batting, faced 56 balls and struck eight fours in adding 53 for the fifth wicket with Raza, who gathered a four and a six off 13 balls in his knock.
Medium pacer Carlos Brathwaite was the best bowler with three for 23, while fellow seamers Dwayne Bravo (2-11) and Jerome Taylor (2-35) both finished with two wickets apiece.
But that was before the West Indies top order came to make light work of the Chevron’s bowling attack.
Openers Johnson Charles and Andre Fletcher punished Zimbabwe with exhilarating unbeaten half-centuries to lead West Indies to an emphatic 10-wicket victory in their second warm-up game.
Chasing 154 at Sharjah Cricket Stadium, West Indies romped to their target in the 13th over with Charles, belting 92 not out off 48 balls and Fletcher striking 56 not out off 33 deliveries.
Charles and Fletcher then pummelled the Zimbabwe attack as West Indies cruised to their second win over the African side in three days.
The right-handed Charles slammed 10 fours and six sixes while Fletcher, also a right-hander, counted five fours and three sixes.
Zimbabwe now connect to India for the WT20 where they will take on Bangladesh on Friday and Ireland two days later at Dharamshala. — sportszone.co.zw