Zimbabwe tells players to get their hair cut January 28, 2007

Dreadlock horror day

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Tawanda Mupariwa: a short back and sides awaits © Getty Images
While some may argue that Zimbabwe Cricket has not got enough on its plate, what with continuing internal unrest and a national side that has lost 12 ODIs on the trot, it has decided to take a firm stand on one of the game's more serious issues.

It has emerged that three of the national side - Keith Dabengwa, Tawanda Mupariwa and Christopher Mpofu - were ordered to have their hair cut or be dropped as part of a new board dress code.

Mpofu and Dabengwa were the first to be chopped, although Mupariwa tried to resist and even wrote a letter to a ZC board member explaining why he wanted to keep his hair. However, he eventually gave up on Saturday evening and was seen spotting his new look when he took to the field for Zimbabwe A on Sunday.

It is not yet clear whether pace bowler Douglas Hondo, who has been spotting locks since he started playing for Zimbabwe in 2001 and is eyeing a comeback after injury problems, will agree to comply.

A stakeholder, who did not wish to be identified, said that it was a surprising move given the rather more pressing concerns facing ZC. He added, tongue firmly in cheek, that the ZC leadership were not likely to be affected by the new rules as neither Peter Chingoka, the chairman, or Ozias Bvute, the managing director, are overly hirsute. On a more serious note, he also asked whether national selector Vumindaba Moyo, who is dreadlocked, would be asked to cut his locks since he is a full-time employee of Zimbabwe Cricket.

Rather like Samson, the lack of hair seemed to sap the strength from the Zimbabweans as they crashed to a heavy defeat at the hands of South Africa A.