Sikandar Raza has been recalled for the tour of Bangladesh/AFP
Zimbabwe batsman Sikandar Raza has been recalled for national duty for their upcoming overseas tour to Bangladesh after the 32-year-old sorted out the contractual issues with Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) on Monday (September 24).
The right-hander had played club cricket in England without obtaining a No Objection Certificate (NOC), and then on being denied the same ahead of the inaugural Gloal T20 Canada, Raza had gone ahead to unilaterally terminate his national contract. Understandably, ZC raised concerns before deciding to not renew his central contract, earlier this month.
Subsequently, he had been omitted from the squads for the upcoming tours to South Africa and Bangladesh, according to Cricbuzz report.
However, on Monday, Raza sat in a meeting with ZC's contracts committee and apologised for his actions, while reassuring them of his commitment to play for the national cricket team. Following a smooth meeting between both parties, the selectors eventually decided to include him for the Bangladesh tour, where Zimbabwe will play three ODIs and two Tests. However, it has been confirmed that Raza will not play the limited-overs series (3 ODIs and 2 T20Is) in South Africa, starting September 30.
"I am extremely delighted with the news and thanks to ZC who quickly sorted out my issues. I just want to put this behind me and concentrate on and enjoy my cricket," Raza said. Earlier this month, Raza had taken to Twitter to express his disappointment at not being handed a central contract and labelled all the blame on acting managing director of ZC, Givemore Makoni. ZC then, via a media release, walked away from its policy of not "discussing employee issues in the media" and confirmed that it was not a decision taken by the acting MD and rather solely decided by the board's Contracts Committee. The board also reminded Raza of Makoni's influence on his career when the latter, who was at the helm at Southern Rocks, had allowed the right-hander to play for them. He had also supported Raza's move to get the Zimbabwean citizenship.
Makoni now has welcomed Raza's return to national duties. "We are pleased to have found common ground with Sikandar, who is is one of our best players. We welcome him back to the national team set-up and we hope he will contribute immensely in Bangladesh and in future tours," he said.