Zimbabwe Cricketers Flout Board’s Order After Kabul Blast
In the wake-up of a suicide Kabul blast on September 13 which left three dead and around 13 injured, as the list of nine Zimbabwean cricketers have had defied the immediate directives from the Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC), after deciding not to return to the country.
The players are concurrently participating in the fifth edition of Shpageeza Cricket League (SCL) which kick-started on September 11 (Monday), under the supervision of Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB).
The reports stated Zimbabwe cricketers opted to for their teams respectively, in the fourth round of the professional league, which could infuriate the management back home, as it has been three days since the statement was made public.
The 19-year-old left-arm orthodox spinner Richard Ngarava was featuring for Amo Sharks against the Boost Defenders on September 16 (Saturday).
“We will not under any circumstances compromise on matters of player safety,” the ZC release stated earlier.
The list of players participating in the Twenty20 league are Vusi Sibanda, Tendai Chatara, Elton Chigumbura, Hamilton Masakadza, Sikandar Raza, Richmond Mutumbami, Richard Ngarava, Raza Butt and Ryan Burl.
Earlier this week, soon after the blast near Kabul International Stadium, ZC was the first to react in its statement that revealed the Board is not going to compromise on the part of security.
As the statement read immediate restitution of the players from the war-torn country, the reports suggested that the Board could come hard against its players after showing cold shoulders.
However, the media in Zimbabwe took a dig at the Sports and Recreation Commission (ZRC) for giving a leeway to their players participating in the national fold which equally received the appropriate response from the SRC chairman Edward Siwela.
“They left the country as individual players; they are not a national team, they were not sent on an assignment by Zimbabwe Cricket and therefore, no clearance was sought for them,” Siwela was quoted by The Standard.
Zimbabwe’s board has already given No Objection Certificates (NOCs) to its players stood canceled following the detonation of explosives from suicide bomber near one of the checkpoints leading to the stadium.
Interestingly, Zimbabwe’s fast bowler Christopher Mpofu was also bound to join one of the SCL franchise as a late signing.
The bomb goes off when the sixth match of the ongoing edition of the SCL was taking place in the stadium between the Boost Defenders and Mis Ainak Knights, as several players from the African region were featuring in the game.
As the six teams are competing in the tournament, the league has been home to at least sixes countries including Windies, South Africa, Pakistan, Oman and Sri Lanka.
The tournament is comprised of 15 league stage games, as the final is scheduled on September 22.
Tahir Ibn Manzoor
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