Hamilton Masakadza, the former Zimbabwe captain and opening batsman, has been appointed the Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) director of cricket. Masakadza, who is Zimbabwe's fourth-highest run-scorer in both Tests and ODIs, retired from international cricket last month and will begin in the new position on Friday.
The director of cricket is a new role created by the ZC board in August when a decision was taken to restructure its management. Masakadza will be responsible for defining policy, strategy and programmes of best practice through all Zimbabwe's teams. He will also be accountable for the recruitment, management and interaction of senior cricket technical staff and is tasked with ensuring that coaches and captains are providing effective leadership to the national teams.
"This is a key appointment that clearly indicates our desire to strengthen our cricket across all levels while also improving the game administratively," ZC chairman Tavengwa Mukuhlani said. "I have no doubt that his incredible passion for Zimbabwe cricket, massive knowledge of our game and the wealth of experience that he gained from playing at the highest level will help transform ZC and see him becoming a respected leader in the sport."
Masakadza has his work cut out for him. Zimbabwe's recent results include a T20I loss to 22nd-ranked Singapore in a tri-series and finishing at the bottom of the points table in another tri-series, in Dhaka, which included Bangladesh and Afghanistan.
Those matches were played while Zimbabwe was suspended by the ICC for government interference in the board. They have since been reinstated as a Full Member, a decision that came too late for them to participate in the ongoing men's T20 World Cup qualifier. Instead, Zimbabwe's focus is on the ODI Super League, which will determine qualification for the 2023 World Cup.
Zimbabwe do not have any more international fixtures this year but are due to host Sri Lanka, Ireland, Netherlands and India next year and are scheduled to travel to Bangladesh, Australia and Sri Lanka.