Bulawayo: Zimbabwe batsman Andy Flower, under pressure to abandon his controversial black armband protest against the government of President Robert Mugabe, failed to appear when it was his side’s turn to field in their World Cup clash against Australia here on Monday.
Team sources said Flower was undergoing treatment for a groin injury although he had earlier appeared untroubled as he smashed 62 in his side’s total of 246 for nine.
The left-hander with Henry Olonga had come under intense pressure to either abandon the protest or face being axed.
There had been no sign of either the black armband, which was worn in the first match against Namibia, or the black wristband which had replaced it for the game against India, when Flower batted earlier in the day.
However, his batting gloves and arm protection meant it was impossible to judge whether or not he had kept faith with the wristband and the mystery deepened when he failed to take the field for Australia’s reply. (AFP)