Talented all-rounder Sean Ervine is set to make a return to international cricket at next year’s World Cup following his inclusion in Zimbabwe’s preliminary 30-man national team squad for the tournament.
Ervine (28) made it clear that he was prepared to make a return to the national team after being unveiled by local franchise Mountaineers before the start of the Stanbic Twenty20 series last month.
In an interview with NewsDay, Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) convener of selectors Alistair Campbell said Ervine’s presence in the team would be a huge boost ahead of the tournament.
“We have been talking to Ervine and at the moment the negotiations have gone well as he is very keen to represent his country and he should be signing a contract with us soon.
“His presence in the team is definitely going to be a huge boost; especially in the batting department both at the World Cup and as we eye a return to Test cricket next year because he will bring a wealth of experience,” Campbell said.
Ervine has been featuring for county side Hampshire since 2004, when he quit international cricket alongside 14 other senior players in 2004 after a dispute with the local sports’ administrators.
He has played 42 ODIs and five Tests since making his debut against England in 2001 and is set to join his younger brother Craig, who was Zimbabwe’s best player at the just ended tour of Bangladesh.
Campbell said the return of medium bowler Tawanda Mupariwa was also a step in the right direction as he could also play a key role in the World Cup squad.
The seamer, who has enjoyed a decent run with Tuskers, at one time fell out of favour as Zimbabwe searched for genuine pace bowlers.
“Mupariwa has had a good season in the domestic limited overs competition and would be a good addition to the team as we have struggled in the seam bowling department where Christopher Mpofu fought a lone battle in Bangladesh.
“In the batting department Tino Mawoyo and Terrence Duffin have also done well. Because as we are a bit biased on the World Cup at the moment some players might be key additions next year when we look to return to Test cricket ,” said Campbell. The duo last played for the national team in 2006 and 2007 respectively.
There were also places for two uncapped players in 19-year-old leg-spinner Natsai Mushangwe and 21-year-old pace bowler Njabulo Ncube. The team will be trimmed to 20 players early next year ahead of the global showpiece in February.
Squad: Elton Chigumbura (captain), Regis Chakabva,
Chamunorwa Chibhabha, Charles Coventry, Graeme Cremer, Keith Dabengwa, Terrence Duffin, Craig Ervine, Sean Ervine, Greg Lamb, Timycen Maruma, Tinotenda Mawoyo, Hamilton Masakadza, Shingirai Masakadza, Keegan Meth, Christopher Mpofu, Tawanda Mupariwa, Natsai Mushangwe, Forster Mutizwa, Njabulo Ncube, Ian Nicolson, Tinashe Panyangara, Raymond Price, Ed Rainsford, Vusimuzi Sibanda, Tatenda Taibu, Brendan Taylor, Prosper Utseya, Malcolm Waller, Sean Williams