By GODFREY DUBE –
THE Zambia Cricket Union (ZCU) has begun trials for prospective Under-17 players to make the national team ahead of the regional tournament.
Zambia will host the regional age group event slated for March in Ndola.
ZCU president Reuben Chama said development officers across the country have been tasked to conduct trials and pick the best players that would attend the final selection trials.
“Since we have Development officers who deal with schools, we have decided that they select players from different schools to attend trials after which only best players will be picked to represent the country. It will be easy this way because everyone will have chance to prove themselves,” he said.
The International Cricket Council (ICC) mandated all member countries in Africa to hold such tournaments of various age groups to senior level.
Chama said the technical bench was aware that the trials will be for the national team hence the need to recruit players with the right skill and talent.
“We are talking about a national team here that will represent the country in the regional Under-17 tournament and not a club. The selection process should be transparent hence we are saying the developmental officers should do the selection and submit to us,” Chama said.
The tournament would attract participation from Mozambique, Botswana and Swaziland and the ZCU has come up with a budget of K200, 000 to successfully host the event.
“ICC sponsored tournaments are not many hence this initiative by member countries to be having such tournaments. We are confident hosting this tournament will help us build strong national teams of different age groups,” Chama said.
He said there was need to intensify developmental programmes in schools as the funds given by ICC were meant for such projects.