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Zim Under-19 take on Namibia


Zimbabwe’s Under-19 cricket team will play Namibia today and England tomorrow in warm-up matches, ahead of the start of the International Cricket Council Under-19 Cricket World Cup on Saturday.

The match against counterparts Namibia, which Zimbabwe will be expected to easily win, will take place at the Ron McMullin Oval in Queensland.

Zimbabwe’s preparedness will no doubt be severely tested when they come up against a well-drilled England side in their second practice match at the WEP Harris Oval in Brisbane. The two practice matches are expected to give skipper Mathew Bentley and his charges a chance to acclimatise to conditions and wickets in Australia before the start of the tournament.

The national U-19 team arrived in Australia on Sunday and the team’s captain Bentley together with the other 15 captains, at the tournament yesterday, attended the launch of the tournament in Brisbane.

Zimbabwe kick start their campaign with a fairly easy tie against Papua New Guinea at Endeavour Park in Townsville on Saturday before taking on pre-tournament favourites India at Tony Ireland Stadium three days later.

The Chris Harris-coached side complete the group stages of the tournament against West Indies at Endeavour Park next Thursday.

Zimbabwe, who will need two victories in the Group C matches to qualify for the knock-out stage, have a daunting task of moving ahead in the presence of tournament favourites West Indies and India.

The national Under-19 side had a poor showing in the 2010 edition where they finished 13th in a 16-team tourney, finishing even below associate member countries such as Ireland, Canada and Papua New Guinea.

Zimbabwe squad: Matthew Bentley (captain), Ryan Burl, Kyle Bowie, Atish Chouhan, Handirisi Shaun, Dex Hobbs, Luke Jongwe, Kelvin Kasuza (vice-captain), Malcolm Lake, Campbell Light, Cuthbert Musoko, Nyasha Mayavo, Liberty Nherera, Andre Odendaal, Peacemore Zimwa

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