Cricket, Opinions

Prosper, Race and Chucking


English: The World Custard Pie Flinging Championship, 2013, Coxheath, UK. By DavidAnstiss via Wikimedia Commons
English: The World Custard Pie Flinging Championship, 2013, Coxheath, UK. By DavidAnstiss via Wikimedia Commons

Prosper Utseya, the Zimbabwean pie-chucker offspinner, has laid a claim of racial discrimination against Zimbabwe Cricket. This news was reported on Cricinfo. Strangely, it has been ignored completely by every Cricinfo reader. The article has no comments at all, which is strange , given how readers there are quick to comment on everything.  There is a follow up article that reports that ZC has set up amn inquiry committee to investigate his accusations. This article has 2 comments. It would appear then that Cricinfo readers do not hold Utseya in much regard.

Given that Utseya was banned from bowling offbreaks, I had questioned his inclusion in the Zimbabwe squad for #CWC15 in an article I wrote for CricketWise about chucking. Clearly, I quite agree with Alistair Campbell’s comment “I’m still a bit baffled by how Prosper Utseya will get on without being allowed to bowl his off-spinner, but no doubt he’ll find a way. He’ll certainly be the only bowler in the tournament without a ‘stock’ ball. He has been bowling medium-pacers and off-cutters recently so perhaps that is the way he will go.”

If I look at his career, I’m hardpressed to understand how he’s played 162 ODIs with an average that tops 46 and an economy rate of 4.35. He has 133 wickets in those 162 ODIs so he is taking 0.82 wickets per game and he’s twice taken 4 wickets in a game. That means for the other 160 ODI’s he is taking 0.78 wickets per game. It is baffling that he actually served as captain of Zimbabwe. The only reason he came into the side at all is because of the strike by the regulars left a huge void to fill.

One of the major points that leaped out at me about all this was the letter Utseya wrote to the board. At more than 10,000 words it is a hefty piece of writing. I mean, out on my other blog, SloWord, I’ve been dealing with my troubles with writing as a task and as a hobby. So far I have not been able to write 10,000 words of any coherence.

Maybe, he should give up offspin and take to spindoctoring. Is there talent there after all?

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