Missing Zimbabwe Cricketers Return Home

It has been established that three cricketers breached their visitor in transit visas in the United Kingdom. The other cricketer is Charles Coventry. In our earlier report we reported that two Zimbabwe cricketers Graeme Cremer and Brendan Taylor had gone missing in England enroute to Zimbabwe following  their tour of the West Indies.

The Zimbabwe cricket squad arrived in the country on Thursday minus the two players amid fears that they might have defected.

People who wish to enter the UK for a short period, for example to visit relatives or do business, before continuing their journey to another country, do not qualify as visitors in transit.

Sources said the three cricketers will be hauled to a disciplinary and are likely to be suspended for tainting the image of Zimbabwe Cricket.

This is not the first time that Zimbabwe sportspersons have defected in the United Kingdom. In 2004 six CAPS United players decided not come to back to Zimbabwe when the club played a controversial friendly match in the United Kingdom.

Crèmer – a leg spinner made his Test debut against Bangladesh in Dhaka on January 6, 2005, a match that Zimbabwe went on to lose handing the Bangladeshi Tigers their first ever Test match victory.

Cremer then played Tests against South Africa and New Zealand. Unfortunately Cremer, seen by many as a Test specialist, had his opportunities limited thereafter due to Zimbabwe’s self-imposed exile from Test cricket. After several years on the fringes of the national team Cremer finally broke into the limited overs squad against the West Indies in late 2005.

Taylor made his debut for Zimbabwe at a time when many of the country’s leading players rebelled against Zimbabwe Cricket (formally known as the Zimbabwean Cricket Union) and made themselves unavailable to represent the side.

He is a good all-round player, who has in the past been successful bowling off-break deliveries. He was recently Zimbabwe’s first choice wicketkeeper until the return of Tatenda Taibu behind the stumps.

Despite his young age, Taylor is among the most experienced players in the current Zimbabwean team, and is considered the team’s best batsman with 11 ODI half-centuries to his name, and a top ODI score of 98.