The 30-man squad is expected to assemble on Thursday to begin preparations for the showpiece event, before being trimmed to 23 on New Year's Eve.
But Latics skipper Darikwa - despite being a key member of the group - will be conspicuous by his absence.
"Darikwa requested that he be excused for personal reasons, as he has a lot going on right now," said the national team's general manager Wellington Mpandare.
"The guy stays over 400km away from Wigan, and he travels literally every day just to be with his family.
"So for him to be away from his family for such a long time would be something else."
Mpandare dismissed speculation Darikwa had fallen out with head coach Norman Mapeza.
"We don't know where people are getting that," he told the Zimbabwe Chronicle.
"It's just silly to suggest the coach has issues with Darikwa."
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