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‘My kids now understand how I grew up in Zimbabwe’ – Taibu

This is Tatenda Taibu, the former Zimbabwe cricket captain who in 2004 became the then youngest Test skipper in history at the age of 20 years and 358 days. Taibu is presently based in the UK, which has reported over 20,000 deaths so far.

By Tatenda Taibu

I currently live in Liverpool; I have been here for the last four years now. Though I still play club cricket, I am more focussed on my coaching career.

I remember when I first heard about the coronavirus, I told my wife, Loveness, ‘For some reason, I think this is going to be deadly but I am not afraid of it.’

She replied, ‘Sweetheart, you don’t normally get affected by such things, then why with this virus?’ I said, ‘God knows.’

Things started getting a bit more serious when there were talks of schools being shut. That was when news from China and other places started pouring in. It got worse and worse.

I actually know a few people in my area who have been infected with the Covid-19, although there have been no casualties so far. Luckily, I know a few doctors who keep us updated about what is going on.

Tatenda Taibu and Family

A lot of people in my area are deeply concerned. People are keeping a safe distance; they are only chatting over the phone, over the fences and by keeping a fair distance.

I think this would have an impact in the long run where people will probably continue to maintain social distancing, because humans are creatures of habit. So, if this goes on for a long time, we may refrain from handshakes. I hope it doesn’t happen.

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Tatenda Taibu

I think the panic buying, the stockpiling happened before the lockdown. Right now, there are some supermarkets that are still open for essentials.

People are understanding the situation better now. It also depends on the particular area that one lives in.

I always used to coach my older boy because he was a bit more interested in cricket, but now even the younger one is taking interest. We are using this opportunity to improve their game.

Tatenda Taibu with family

So we play daily for three to five hours. We have a garden and after they finish their school work, we pretty much focus on cricket practice.

I am also introducing them to a lot of games that we used to play back in Zimbabwe when we were kids. We didn’t grow up in front of a TV.

We had to make things with our own hands. Everything was not readily available.

So the other day, we actually dislodged the trampoline in the garden and made a semi-net out of it for our cricket. The kids are getting to understand how I grew up—not just by words but by action.

Loveness is a great cook, so I don’t have to mess around with the pots. She handles that department. I am a terrible cook.

Though I make the occasional breakfast, if you give me anything complicated, it will be a big disappointment.

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I have always helped with the household chores. I am in charge of ironing but again, I am a terrible room cleaner.

My message to everybody is to try and utilise the time indoors. Keep progressing with your life. I don’t think there should be any room for boredom.

For those who are generally busy with their professional life, they should use this phase to spend some quality time with their family.

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