Tinashe Panyangara suspended over use of Whatsapp

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Experienced Zimbabwean bowler Tinashe Panyangara has been suspended for the remainder of the ongoing triangular series with Australia and South Africa after the seamer apparently shared a video of Mitchell Johnson bowling via a messaging app, reportsESPNcricinfo.

The 28-year-old – who has played 34 One Day Internationals – sent a video of the Australian fast bowler competing against England during last winter’s Ashes through a group Whatsapp chat with teammates.

Once Zimbabwe cricket realised what had happened, their action was to issue a suspension and fine the player (US)$1000. This action comes just days after the Aussies thrashed the lowly ranked ODI nation by 198 runs in Harare.

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Video content

The video in question showcased Johnson’s short-pitched bowling, attacking the opposing batsmen with bouncers. It is possible that the video was just sent as a joke, following the
left-armer’s six overs that went for just seven runs and claimed a wicket in the opening match of the series on Monday.

However, it obviously wasn’t as witty as Panyangara found it. The backroom staff of a side that has been whitewashed by the South Africa and tied a series with Afghanistan in recent ODI outings decided that his presence would have a detrimental effect on the dressing room.

Zimbabwean indiscipline

It is not the only recent example of a Zimbabwean cricketer getting into trouble with the sport’s national authority.

Earlier this month, Luke Jongwe had the entire match fee from his international debut completely removed after he missed a curfew. The all-rounder did remain in the squad for
the rest of the ODI series against the Proteas though.

Zimbabwe coach Stephen Mangongo has instilled some restrictions on his squad when they are playing in an ongoing series. Players have a 9.30pm curfew, can’t drink, and aren’t allowed any female visitors.

Remainder of triangular series

This whole saga now leaves Zimbabwe facing the prospect of playing Australia once more and two ties against South Africa without their most experienced international seamer.

Of the current squad, the next most-capped fast bowler is Shingi Masakadza, who has represented his country in just 16 50-over encounters.

This Friday, the side face South Africa once again, when they will look to improve on the recent 4-0 loss they suffered at the hands of their neighbours. The most respectable
performance in that two-team series was a 61-run defeat, so Zimbabwe will at least want to better that.

However, that job is now going to be even more difficult without the services of their most experienced seam bowler.

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