Pakistan-born cricketer and Southern Rocks right-hand batsman Sikandar Raza Butt (24) wants to play for Zimbabwe.
Raza confirmed the news in an interview with NewsDay on Thursday.
“Playing for the Zimbabwe national team will be the ideal thing for me. It’s something that I’ve been looking foward to since I decided to become a professional cricketer.” said Butt.
“The level of cricket here is now very high and I know I have to continue working hard and be consistent at this level of the game.
“Playing alongside players like Brian Lara, Steve Tikolo, Tatenda Taibu and Chamunorwa Chibhabha has been a positive influence in the development of my game,” said Butt.
Butt scored a match-winning knock of 93 off 48 balls to help his side beat Matabeleland Tuskers by 41 runs on Wednesday.
The Rocks’ opening batsman came to Zimbabwe when his family migrated from Pakistan in 2002 as a 15-year-old and says he has fallen in love with the country.
He played domestic cricket intermittently for the then local side Northerns before moving to Scotland (Langside College) for his studies where he graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in software engineering.
“After my studies I spoke to my dad about my wish to take cricket on a full-time basis and that’s when Givemore Makoni (Southern Rocks chief executive) signed me for last year’s Twenty20 tournament.
“Since then I have never looked back.”
Butt said he was now hoping that the issue of his citizenship be solved for him to be considered for selection.
Meanwhile, the Zimbabwe Cricket chairman of selectors Alistair Campbell said once Butt’s citizenship application is successful, he would be considered for the national team.
“That performance on Wednesday showed that he is a good player and I’m aware that he submitted his paperwork. If he is successful he will be considered for selection but based on merit,” said Campbell.