HARARE – The return of Dave Houghton as Zimbabwe’s coach might pave way for the selection of a troubled but talented fast cricketer with roots in the southern African country, who has been released by English county side Derbyshire.

27-year-old fast bowler Dustin Melton (pictured), who was born in Harare, was adopted at the age of three and grew up in South Africa.

His career has been held back by personal tragedy in his life, from the murder of his biological mother to the suicide of a girlfriend.

He has also been injury-prone, but has taken 27 wickets for Derbyshire.

And now with Melton being let go by Derbyshire, Houghton is believed to be convincing the strongly-built pacer to consider an international career with his country of birth.

Former Zimbabwe captain Houghton has high regard for Melton, who he coached when he was head of cricket at Derbyshire in 2019-20.

“Unfortunately, we aren’t going to renew Dustin Melton contract at the end of the season,” Derbyshire head coach Mickey Arthur told a UK publication in April.

With his good pace and bounce and at 27, Melton would be welcome reinforcement to a Zimbabwe bowling attack that is worryingly toothless, often exposed for its over-reliance on the impressive Blessing Muzarabani.


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