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After the International Cricket Council (ICC) has recently suspended Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC), Zimbabwe’s cricket future is under the dark cloud. Former Zimbabwe criketer Grant Flower feels that the ICC has run out of patience with the ZC.
From the long-time, the ZC is struggling financially. Even, recently, they have requested to the ICC for the additional fund to clear dues of players and staffs. Recently, the ZC cancelled Zimbabwe women’s tour of Ireland due to the lack of funds.
In this turmoil situation, the ICC has recently suspended the ZC for failing to conduct free and democratic elections and to administrate without the government interference.
This latest suspension means that the ZC can’t receive the funds from the ICC and they can’t participate in the ICC events. In this situation, the ZC is unable to organise the domestic competitions for the upcoming season. Moreover, their other international commitments are also in serious doubt.
It sounds like the ICC have just had enough – Grant Flower
Grant Flower feels that the ICC has finally tired to see the constant corruption and fraud at ZC.
Recently, Flower told ESPNcricinfo, “I can understand the player’s frustrations, but unfortunately with Zimbabwe cricket, it sounds like the ICC have just had enough. Regarding money owed and money lent, and money the ICC gave Zimbabwe that they’re probably never going to see again, it sounds like maybe they’ve run out of patience.
“I think over time, the ICC have just been worn down by all the corruption, the fraud, and the problems with Zimbabwe cricket not being able to get its house in order. Maybe they thought a jolt to their system would make some people realise what was expected of them.
“They would have reasoned Zimbabwe needed to understand that at some stage, you’ve got to put your house in order, and we can’t keep propping you up like we have been doing over the years.
“We can go back so many years to when things were very badly run. It’s pretty obvious what was happening at the time and the people responsible who were involved. And I think the current crop of players and the interim board, who are really good people, are being punished because the ICC felt they needed to take a stand.”
Flower certainly think this is far worse
Grant Flower has admitted that the latest suspension will make the condition worse for the Zimbabwe cricketers. Till this suspension period, the ZC will not receive the funds from ICC. So, Zimbabwe’s cricket has a tough chance to grow up in this suspension period.
Flower added, “Even when we were leaving, there were a good bunch of youngsters coming through that could get the country’s cricket going. But that’s not the case anymore, with even the domestic competitions unable to take place.
“For it to be stopped until October at the very least, the guys are probably going to go and play in the leagues, seek a future elsewhere to try and look after their families, So yeah, I certainly think this is far worse.”
It’d be a pity it won’t be for their country of birth – Grant Flower
Grant Flower is hoping that the Zimbabwe Cricket will take the harsh lesson from this tough situation. However, he is more worried about the future of Zimbabwe’s cricket.
Flower said, “Unfortunately in Zimbabwe corruption is rife. When you live there, you get used to it. It’s quite an unhealthy state of life and affairs which has become the norm. It’s quite frightening, but until you live there, you don’t quite actually realise that.
“The scapegoats are the players and some of the good administrators. I saw this thing on Twitter about Harare Sports club, it’s a beautiful ground and at the moment it’s just going to waste because no one is being paid and the staff have left. It’s publicly owned by Harare Sports Club and the upkeep is paid for by Zimbabwe Cricket so unfortunately those sorts of things may just go to ruin.
“It is a sad day, and maybe some of the players are going to move on. Most of the players are still quite young, like Brendan Taylor and Kyle Jarvis, who left their county to return to Zimbabwe. They could still ply their trade elsewhere; it’d be a pity it won’t be for their country of birth.”
Most recently, the ZC has cancelled Zimbabwe’s upcoming tour in Bangladesh. According to the FTP, Zimbabwe have to participate in the T20I tri-series in Bangladesh in September. Apart from Zimbabwe and Bangladesh, Afghanistan will also participate in this tri-series.
Zimbabwe men and women’s teams’ participations in their respective T20 World Cup qualifiers are also in serious doubt. The 2019 ICC Women’s World Twenty20 Qualifier will run from 31st August to 7th September 2019. Meanwhile, the 2019 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Qualifier will run between 11th October and 3rd November 2019.