Zimbabwe cricket team shrugged off their fatigue to arrive in Dhaka on Monday to play a four-match Twenty20 international series against Bangladesh.
The visitors, who were busy playing against Afghanistan in UAE until late hour on Sunday, were welcomed by heavy traffic congestion as the city experienced an unusual gridlock due to a political rally.
Zimbabwe’s travel agony will not end until today when they will fly for Khulna, the city that will host all four matches of the series, respectively on January 15, 17, 19 and 22.
Zimbabwe lost to Bangladesh 3-0 in one-day international series and drew 1-1 in Twenty20 international series during their last visit to Bangladesh in November.
Things hardly improved for the side as since then they lost 3-2 against Afghanistan at home before losing 3-2 in ODIs and 2-0 in Twenty20 Internationals against the same side in the most recent series at UAE.
Afghan opener Mohammad Shahzad completed the humiliation with a majestic 118 of 67 balls which included 10 fours and eight sixes to give his side a massive 215-6 in Sharjah in their Sunday’s match.
Zimbabwe could make only 134 all out in 18.1 overs to concede a morale shattering 81-run defeat to Afghans hours before arriving in Dhaka.
The Afghan humiliation forced Zimbabwean selectors to make some changes in their squad for the Bangladesh series, which itself is a preparation for both the sides for the forthcoming ICC World Twenty20 in India in March-April.
Batsman Vusi Sibanda and left-arm seamer Brian Vitori were recalled while all-rounder Sean Williams, who was ruled out of the Zimbabwe’s recent Twenty20 series against Afghanistan with a groin injury, retuned in the 16-man squad.
Sibanda has played for Zimbabwe in last July and Vitori, who will join Neville Madziva, Luke Jongwe, Taurai Muzarabani and Donald Tiripano to make a pace quartet, was also absent since then.
Graeme Cremer will lead the spin attack along with left-armer Tendai Chisoro and Wellington Masakadza.
Paceman Tinashe Panyangara and Craig Ervine, who had caught flu after scoring 73 in an ODI two weeks ago, were the notable exclusion for the Elton Chigumbura led side after their UAE tour.
Squad : Elton Chigumbura, Malcolm Waller, Peter Moor, Sikandar Raza, Graeme Cremer, Hamilton Masakadza, Wellington Masakadza, Richmond Mutumbami, Sean Williams, Chamu Chibhabha, Neville Madziva, Luke Jongwe, Taurai Muzarabani, Tendai Chisoro, Vusi Sibanda, Brian Vitori.
-With New Age input