November 11, 2020

Chigumbura out, who is the next finisher?

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Brighton Zhawi

With Elton Chigumbura retired, who will fill the finisher’s role?

For most of his 16-year long career, Chigumbura has been effective at the end of innings with his power-hitting.

He would also bowl and that was perfect for the team’s balance.

However, his bowling career was blighted by injuries, mainly a back injury which restricted him to minimum and eventually no-bowling at all.

In 2015 Chigumbura moved up the order, batting at four.

He was solely playing as a batsman and it yielded positive results as he scored his first international ton, one achieved in Pakistan.

He followed that with another hundred, this time against India at Harare Sports Club.

But Chigumbura was always a finisher.

When form deserted him and he found himself out of the team, he got domestic runs.

He was recalled into the team as a finisher because of his big-hitting ability and briskness between wickets.

His career is over now.

Who is the next man to give that impetus at the end of innings?

“There are a couple of names, (Sikandar) Raza is now playing in that role. There is also (Luke) Jongwe and Neville Madziva,” said Chigumbura during his retirement virtual press conference.

“If they get a chance, they will play in that role well,” said Chigumbura.

Raza has been in that role before and he comes with huge experience and being a T20 “gun-for-hire” is significant.

Neville Madziva starred with an unbelievable inning when he blasted 18 runs in an over when Zimbabwe beat Bangladesh in a T20I in 2015.

Other options include Luke Jongwe who also has some international experience.

Jongwe is a balanced seam bowling all-rounder, the same as William Mashinge who was part of the 30 man-squad for the Pakistan tour.

With the domestic season starting soon, there seems to be motivation for all who regard themselves as finishers.

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