Two former Zimbabwean internationals have unleashed on each other in a scathing Facebook exchange about the country's on-field performance.

Mark Vermeulen and Brendan Taylor showed no mercy in a very public forum, as they argued over Zimbabwe's most recent loss to Afghanistan in a one-day international.

After Afghanistan posted 253-9 from their 50 overs, Zimbabwe suffered the humiliation of being bowled out for 54 in just 13.5 overs.

Taylor, who played 23 tests and 167 ODIs for his country, defended the team, saying: "Ex players and commentators always sit back and chip away because it's easy watching from the comfort of their homes or from a commentary box but forget how tough it can be in the middle."

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Mark Vermeulen of Zimbabwe shows his discomfort after being struck by the ball against India. Photo/Getty Images
Mark Vermeulen of Zimbabwe shows his discomfort after being struck by the ball against India. Photo/Getty Images

Vermeulen wasn't buying it, and that's when things got interesting.

Vermeulen took exception to another Facebook user's comments on the matter and told Taylor to "be careful what you say about me u (sic) little f***".

Taylor then took to Twitter to post a screenshot of the Facebook conversation, calling Vermeulen a "psycho".

Vermeulen has a history of losing his cool. As a schoolboy in the 1990s, he once walked off the ground with the stumps and locked himself in the changeroom, after receiving a poor lbw decision.

He was hit with a 10-year ban from English club cricket for getting in an altercation with spectators during a game in 2006, when they started giving him stick from beyond the boundary rope and he threw a ball at them.


When Taylor refers to him "burning down one of the few establishments we had", he's referencing an incident where the batsman set fire to Zimbabwe's cricket academy in 2006, following his non-selection in the national side.

Vermeulen was acquitted of arson in 2008, after he was deemed to be suffering psychiatric problems, resulting from a blow to the head he copped, while batting in an ODI in Australia in 2004.

In 2015, Zimbabwe banned the 37-year-old from all cricket for racist comments on a Facebook post of a letter written by black cricketer Prosper Utseya, which alleged racism was a problem in sport within the country.

Vermeulen made mention of "white people" having "f***ed up apes' lives".

"If we ... had never educated them, Prosper wouldn't be having these problems," Vermeulen wrote.

Aside from Vermeulen, Taylor also took aim at former Zimbabwean captain Stuart Carlisle, who criticised the team's loss to Afghanistan.

"I see we've lost another ODI series to the Afghans, yet another new low for Zim cricket!! V sad!!" Carlisle posted on Facebook.

In his initial Facebook post defending Zimbabwe, Taylor posted Carlisle's batting stats, showing he averaged 26.91 across 37 tests and 27.67 in 111 ODIs.

"These stats should back up his statement," Taylor wrote.