Zimbabwe news June 9, 2010

Zimbabwe headed in the right direction - Taylor

Cricinfo staff

Zimbabwe have taken major steps towards regaining their position in the cricketing hierarchy, of challengers capable of toppling the best sides on their day, and Brendan Taylor who has been at the forefront of the turnaround, has reaffirmed his loyalty to the Zimbabwean cause.

"Zimbabwe is my home and it is good place to be in right now," Taylor told DNA. "I want to support Zimbabwe cricket as much as I can. We're training hard and trying to give our best to play against Australia, India and Sri Lanka. Hopefully by next year, we will get our Test status back and things here will be normal soon.

"We feel the first class structure in Zimbabwe is heading in the right direction. It's run professionally and we just hope it continues the same way. We have got five teams at the moment and we're trying to give exposure to the youngsters," he said.

Zimbabwe's trough in world cricket coincided with the political upheaval in the country which drove several of their leading players away. Taylor was one of the few white cricketers who stuck with the team through the tough phase and spearheaded a few upsets during his time.

"Beating Australia (in the first World Twenty20) was a very special moment. They were the world champions at that stage. The last-ball six against Bangladesh in 2006 which gave us series win. It was the closest game I've ever played in," he said.

Taylor top-scored in each of Zimbabwe's three victories in the ongoing tri-series, getting a century and two fifties in the process. He almost single-handedly derailed India's campaign - an outcome even he is surprised by. "I love Indian cricketers and follow them closely. The present side is slightly out of form. We're surprised that they have left their main players out. But the current side has some quality cricketers. I'm really surprised that they are out of the tournament."

India and Sri Lanka may have sent depleted sides for the series, and while Taylor admits it made his side compete better, it would have been a good learning experience for Zimbabwe to face full-strength opposition. "That's [strength of the other teams] not in our hands but I feel a lot happy that India have not fielded their best team. They would have made our task much harder.

"At the same time, I would have liked them to be here. It would have been a good experience for us. I have immense respect for players like Yuvraj, Dhoni and Sachin. But we enjoyed playing against the current team. We learnt a lot," he said.

With his recent exploits, Taylor has his sights set on impressing the IPL talent scouts, and if things go his way, he may follow Tatenda Taibu to the lucrative Twenty20 league. "Certainly, every cricketer's dream is to be a part of the IPL. I know there are two new teams from this year and I have my aspirations to play in the IPL. A few more good performances and I know I can get an IPL contract. It's my aim to be part of such a well-established tournament," Taylor said.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Simon on June 10, 2010, 11:52 GMT

    Zimbabwe has a good crop of young players coming through who are capable of returning Zimbabwe to a positive position in world cricket. Certainly test status in the next few months should be the next push, although I would wait until the conclusion of the Intercontinental Cup before pushing for such a request too heavily.

    Remember that while there are some wonderful positives to take from this, and there is some definite signs good for Zimbabwe, only a few years ago Zimbabwe lost a heck of a lot of good players due to a) political interference; b) pay disputes; c) racists selection policies; d) a right mess of a country thanks to Mugabe. And I hate to break the news but he is still around, he still pulls the strings, Zimbabwe is on a knife edge and it wouldn't take much to reverse 4 or five years. I hope and I pray for the good not just of cricket but for Zimbabwe as a whole, I have friends who are Zimbabwean. There is still a long road ahead for Zimbabwe in sport and otherwise.

  • Muhammad Shahroakh on June 9, 2010, 17:49 GMT

    Zimbabwe should get back their test status.ICC should think to spread the cricket all over the world.so make more test status team like Ireland n give Zimbabwe back their status.

  • Devinderpal Singh on June 9, 2010, 16:10 GMT

    The article says that he was one of the few white players to stick with Zimbabwe...out of interest, were the white players who "disowned" Zimbabwe, for lack of a better word, players such as the Flower brothers, Streak or different players?

  • Chandrasekaran on June 9, 2010, 11:14 GMT

    Thats really good to see, Zimbabwe back in the big league. Bit frustrated with Bangladesh they promised a lot but never delivered. And thought anither great team like Zimbabwe will also fade away. But its not the way.

    I was an admirer of Andy Blignaut's aggression and hope to see it back. Keep politics away and bring back people like Campbell, Streak, Flower brothers to train the youngsters.

  • Dummy4 on June 9, 2010, 9:57 GMT

    Well there's a big difference between winning a few one day games against India and Sri Lanka and playing competitive test cricket. The flotilla of Zimbabwean spinners (Price, Utseya, Lamb and Cremer) will not be able to take 20 wickets in a match between them. They need guys like Mpofu, Muparwira, Rainsford and Chigimbura to produce wickets with the new ball. The middle order is also weak but once Shaun Ervine finishes his Kolpak stint I am sure he will be straight back into the side.

  • Dummy4 on June 9, 2010, 9:14 GMT

    well done Zimbabwe... but They won't be able to win the finals... sorry people.... the may have to wait for long time to win a major tournament..

  • SWAMINATHAN on June 9, 2010, 8:22 GMT

    oh, I'd pick coventry .. more of a slm-bam man than taylor ... but taylor got his keeping (part-time) as an incentive .... ray price the thinker would also be handy ... the IPL scouts are definitely looking

  • Dummy4 on June 9, 2010, 7:50 GMT

    You beat India and Sri Lanka, that is more than enough. Winning the tournament would be just a bonus. So good job guys well done. At least for the moment you have the world's attention.

  • Dummy4 on June 9, 2010, 7:35 GMT

    Brendan Taylor... man.. u impress us all and I hope u score one more century and get hold of that beautiful cup..

  • Dummy4 on June 9, 2010, 6:58 GMT

    Never mind the toss, go for the win!!!

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