Chigumbura had no choice

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THE resignation of Elton Chigumbura did not come as a surprise to the cricket fraternity in the country.
The all-rounder last week announced his resignation as captain of the Zimbabwe senior men’s cricket team after a series of uninspiring performances during his tenure.
After several losses, most of them disappointing by the flagship team, a decision had to be made and it was honourable that it was Chigumbura who chose to throw in the towel than face the prospect of being stripped of his captaincy.
Chigumbura resigns for the second time from the same position.
He was captain of the national team in 2010 before his resignation in June 2011. He was then re-appointed as Chevrons skipper in 2014 as limited overs captain while Brendan Taylor was appointed Test captain.
Chigumbura then took over the reigns as Test captain after the resignation of Taylor.
Now that the all-rounder has resigned, who will succeed him?
To some, it was the right thing to do.
The statistics during his disastrous tenure were appalling.
After being in charge of the national team for 80 matches, he won a paltry 20 which included famous victories against New Zealand and Australia in Zimbabwe.
Many remember the New Zealand victory in 2011 where the Chevrons chased down a total of 327 runs to win by one wicket. The 2015 victory over Australia was also written in the books of history.
“I have enjoyed the challenges that came with leading the team. Now I feel it’s the best time to leave it to the next guy to lead us so I can focus on my game as a player. I am sure I will lead from the front as a senior player as I still believe I have more years of playing in me and of winning games for the team,” said Chigumbura.
The captaincy which has been evading Hamilton Masakadza now appears a reality.
The former Churchill High student is odds on favourite to take over as captain.
Masakadza has been vice-captain and was in charge of the team in the two T20 matches against Bangladesh that Zimbabwe clinically won.
It is likely that Masakadza will be leading the Chevrons in the limited overs tour of West Indies next month.
Zimbabwe are preparing for the World T20 Cup hosted by India in March this year.
The sudden loss of form for Zimbabwe is worrisome ahead of the World T20 Cup as they have to play in pre-qualifiers. Zimbabwe’s poor ranking make them play in the qualifiers to join the top eight teams in the ICC world rankings. Zimbabwe are ranked 14th.
The top eight teams have direct entry into the main draw. Zimbabwe will have to battle it out in their group with Scotland, Afghanistan – Zimbabwe’s bogey side – and Hong Kong. Zimbabwe need to finish top of the group to qualify for the main draw.
Prosper Utseya, Chigumbura, Tatenda Taibu and Taylor have captained Zimbabwe after the year 2000.

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