Byo cricket team heads for Botswana
BAINES Junior School-based Dumisani Mankunzini Cricket Initiative (DMCI) will next week compete at an invitational tournament to be held in Gaborone, Botswana from Tuesday to Friday.
This is the third time that DMCI, formed in 2011, will be embarking on a regional tour and will take 13 players to compete in the Under-13s at the competition.
The DMCI team will leave Bulawayo by road on Monday morning and will play Twenty20 matches at a tournament organised by Trymore Taruvinga’s Cubs Academy.
Taruvinga is a former Churchill High School cricketer who was part of Zimbabwe cricket’s national Under-19 squad in 2007.
Mankunzini said the squad is made up of players who took part at last weekend’s fifth edition of the Baines Junior Dumisani Mankunzini Winter Cricket Festival won by Mtshingwe Primary School of Emakhandeni.
He said the purpose of the Botswana trip is part of their development programme meant to expose youngsters to competitive cricket. “We’ve been invited by our Botswana friends, Cubs Cricket Academy to participate at their annual tournament next week and we’re very excited. Unlike last year where we had three teams, the Under-9s, Under-11s and the Under-13s, this time we are only taking Under-13s.
“This tour is going to be an eye opener for the boys as they will be exposed to better facilities and good competition. It is important that as they develop in cricket, they get exposed to competitive games so that when it’s time to get into national teams they are not intimidated,” Mankunzini said.
The former Zimbabwe Under-19 and Matabeleland Tuskers Cricket Franchise cricketer, whose career in the sport was brought to an abrupt end due to a back injury, is the brains behind the DMCI.
Gampu’s Ashley Chipare, who was voted as the 2016 Baines Junior Dumisani Mankunzini Winter Cricket Festival Player of the Tournament as well as the Batsman of the Tournament after scoring 156 runs, is part of the team that will represent DMCI.
Lungile Nyathi of Mtshingwe, who took 15 wickets at last weekend’s colourful competition at Baines Junior and winner of the Best Bowler accolade, is also in the team which is being captained by Charles Takavengwa of Milton Junior.
A group of former Baines Junior School students based in the United Kingdom donated sporting equipment worth more than $3 000 to the school in Bulawayo. In this file picture Sheunesu Masuka presents the equipment to the school head Buhle Koffi while his counterpart Bridget Mtetwa and deputy head Coggan Bhebhe look on