South Africa in Zimbabwe 2014 August 8, 2014

Vermeulen returns to Zimbabwe Test squad

ESPNcricinfo staff

Batsman Mark Vermeulen has been recalled to Zimbabwe's Test squad for the one-off Test against South Africa in Harare starting on Saturday. It will be his first Test in ten years and first international in four years. The 15-man squad has two uncapped players in offspinner John Nyumbu and right-arm seamer Cuthbert Musoko.

Vermeulen had been in impressive form for Zimbabwe A against the touring Afghanistan side recently, with a century in the first unofficial Test in Harare. He was also the second-highest run-getter for Eagles in the 2013-14 first-class Logan Cup with 580 runs in seven games with a century and four fifties. Vermeulen's career had been halted by court cases - he was acquitted of arson - and psychiatric problems.

In a recent interview with ESPNcricinfo, he said how he was desperate to make use of whatever time he had left in the game.

Nyumbu, who plays for Matabeleland Tuskers was the joint-highest wicket-taker in the Logan Cup with 34 wickets, including four five-wicket hauls. Musoko took four wickets for Zimbabwe A in the second unofficial Test against Afghanistan.

Donald Tiripano, the right-arm seamer who has played three ODIs for Zimbabwe, was also named in the squad. Tiripano took a five-wicket haul in the third ODI against Afghanistan.

Although Sikanda Raza was included in the squad, the batsman is still recovering from a broken thumb and will not play in the Test. Zimbabwe's coach Stephen Mangongo confirmed Butt, Musoko and Malcolm Waller would not be in the XI.

Despite Butt's injury, there was no room in the squad for opening batsman Tino Mawoyo, who was part of the 25-man training group. Shingi Masakadza was also left out of the Test squad as well as left-arm seamer Brian Vitori, after picking up an ankle injury.

A dry Harare pitch has led to speculation that spin may become a factor earlier than expected in the match but Zimbabwe's squad did not include some of their better known spinners. Legspinner Natsai M'Shangwe did not make the cut while veteran Prosper Utseya is ill with chicken pox.

Squad: Brendan Taylor (capt & wk), Regis Chakabva, Sikandar Raza, Tendai Chatara, Elton Chigumbura, Hamilton Masakadza, Cuthbert Musoko, Richmond Mutumbami (wk), John Nyumbu, Tinashe Panyangara, Vusi Sibanda, Donald Tiripano, Mark Vermeulen, Malcolm Waller, Sean Williams

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dummy4 on August 9, 2014, 6:05 GMT

    Waller and Raza will surely be missed. @ And1son and ZCFOutkast,thanks for your objective and enlightening comments. I always read everything you write...

  • Dummy4 on August 8, 2014, 23:15 GMT

    Gutted to see that Tino has been omitted. He is quite the Test player but lets see how it pans out, lets hope the Zim lads will fire from all cylinders.

  • Dummy4 on August 8, 2014, 17:09 GMT

    Where is Tino Mawoyo ? He is the best test match opener in the country, yet surprising he does not find a place.

    And what about Tawanda Mupariwa ? Not heard his name since ages !!

    Tiripano is a good selection.

  • ZCF on August 8, 2014, 17:07 GMT

    @ad1son Vermeulen&Taylor are the only natural openers in that squad! Review you knowledge of Zim cricket.

  • Farai on August 8, 2014, 14:38 GMT

    at all you guys i don't know why you put up all these random guys as openers especially against the number 1 ranked team. Masakadza will open with Sibanda. Vermeulen is NOT an opener.@Troyd i agree about Williams. He has some very poor judgement/vision running between the wickets so hopefully no one gets run out.

    I somewhat agree also about Vusi but ONLY in the test format. some time ago his average was 15. now it's 25 which means it's higher than 30+ since he's actually improved. I just think he is done in limited overs cricket.

    Out of the players currently still plying their trade for Zim; Mawoyo, Mpofu, Vitori, Raza and Utseya will be missed dearly through injury and sickness.

  • Andrew on August 8, 2014, 13:56 GMT

    1. Masakadza (Love the guy even if he is well known to struggle against the better teams), 2.Vermuelen (please do well Mark!) 3. Sibanda (does tend to raise his game against the better teams - and is due a change of form) 4. Taylor (lead-from-the-front performance required) 5. Williams (enigma : just dont get run-out) 6. Mutambami (been looking good recently) 7. Chakabva (can cement his place with a few good performances) 8. Chigumbura (the old war horse) 9. Nyumbu (worth a go - though i would have preferred Maruma or Utseya) 10. Panyangara (steady if unspectacular) 11. Chatara (the ace amongst the bowlers.)

    just looking for a competitive performance - a bit of fight and pride. Good luck Zim!!

    Unlucky : Raza

  • Dummy4 on August 8, 2014, 12:00 GMT

    Masakadza,Vermeulen,Sibanda,Taylor,Chigumbura,Mutumbami,Tiripano, ,Williams, Waller,Panyangara,

  • ZCF on August 8, 2014, 11:21 GMT

    Wow! Surprised to see Mawoyo out. Perhaps he lacks general fitness for this contest. Mutumbami has been in good touch, and Chakabva has come of a brilliant domestic season but hasn't been authoritative. One of them will open. Equally surprised to see Shingi miss out. Injury or otherwise Utseya is not selected. Nyumbu was never a world beater at domestic level, and his better season(last) came against youngsters, but I guess it's asking for too much to say Williams must be the lone spinner. With Musoko&Tiripano being the other bowling options, that must surely mean only two specialist seamers will be in the XI. The former while promising didn't excel for the u19 WC, while the latter has experience but it would take a brave selector to make debut against Amla&co in Test match. For the upteenth time, why is Malcolm Waller still part of national selction?

    Vermeulen, Mutumbami, Vusi, Hamilton, Taylor, Williams, Chigumbura, Chakabva(wk), Nyumbu, Panyangara, Chatara

  • freeman on August 8, 2014, 11:07 GMT

    regie, waller, dony, and raza will not play

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