Zimbabwe Cricketers Are Willing To Play For Free To Save Country’s Cricket
In the present toughest moment, the Zimbabwe cricketers still want to play cricket even for free to save the country’s cricket.
On 18th July 2019, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has suspended the Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) for failing to conduct free and democratic elections and to administrate without the government interference.
Before that suspension, the ZC was already struggling financially. They even failed to send the women’s team in Ireland in early this month due to lack of fund.
Now, the ZC is ineligible to receive any fund from the ICC due to the ongoing suspension. Till the suspension period, the Zimbabwe cricket teams also can’t participate in the ICC tournaments.
Both Zimbabwe men’s and women’s cricket teams have qualified for their respective forthcoming ICC T20 World Cup Qualifiers. Scotland will host the 2019 ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Qualifier from 31st August to 7th September 2019.
Meanwhile, the UAE will organise the 2019 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup Qualifier from 11th October to 3rd November 2019.
However, both teams’ participation in the T20 World Cup qualifiers is seriously doubtful due to the present ICC suspension.
We will play for free as long as we can see the light at the end of the tunnel
The Zimbabwe cricketers have wished to play cricket for free to keep alive this game in the country. They are ready to play the upcoming qualifiers for even free.
A senior Zimbabwe squad member told ESPNcricinfo, “We will play for free as long as we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Our next assignment is the (T20 World Cup) qualifiers. I will play for free as long as we are assured that we will be paid eventually. We will play qualifiers for the sake of cricket staying alive and for free but to be paid late and not never.”
Another player has also made the same wish to save the country’s cricket.
That player quoted, “As long as there’s a future and you can see that things are going to fall into place, I have no doubt that most guys would.”
Is the Zimbabwe Cricket ready to continue the cricket?
However, the Zimbabwe cricket teams still can play the bilateral series. Even, the ICC can also appoint the match officials if Zimbabwe hosts the bilateral series.
But recently, the ZC has cancelled their tour of Bangladesh. Earlier, they have a plan to play a T20I tri-series in Bangladesh in September 2019 along with Afghanistan and the hosts Bangladesh.
The ZC has also claimed that they can’t organise the domestic tournaments of the upcoming season.
According to the FTP, Zimbabwe will host a full international series against Afghanistan in August 2019. In this tour, they have to play one-off Test match, five-match bilateral ODI series and three-match bilateral T20I series.
Later, in this October, Zimbabwe has another FTP schedule to host Windies for the one-off Test match and five-match bilateral ODI series.
However, all these series are seriously doubtful in the present circumstances. Even, if the Zimbabwe cricketers want to play for free, the ZC’s ability to host these series are in the question mark.
Recently, the ICC has given the ZC a deadline on 8th October 2019 to resolve all the issues. If they follow all the procedure correctly, the ICC can reconsider their suspension. However, the ZC’s failure in this process can force the ICC to terminate their membership.
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