Zimbabwe sure of keeping Test status

Zimbabwe Cricket Union expects England to fulfill their Test fixtures in Harare and Bulawayo.

Updated: February 25, 2007 10:07 IST
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Harare:Zimbabwe are unlikely to play Test cricket when they tour Pakistan in October, but the Zimbabwe Cricket Union expects England to fulfill their Test fixtures in Harare and Bulawayo the following month. There has been no contact with the Pakistan Cricket Board since a report in a Pakistan newspaper that the PCB were considering cancelling the Tests and bringing Zimbabwe into a one-day international tournament with West Indies and Sri Lanka. "We would be amenable to that" the ZCU chief executive Vincent Hogg said. "We haven't discussed it yet with the Pakistan Board, but I'm sure that would be a practicable course to take." On the other hand, England remains committed to two Tests and four (down from five) internationals, as far as the ZCU is concerned despite last month's agreement with Australia to postpone for at least four years their two scheduled Test matches. The ZCU are also confident they will retain Test status when the International Cricket Council meets in three weeks. That meeting will be attended by chairman Peter Chingoka and Hogg. "There could be a moratorium on Tests for six months or may be a year," Hogg said Wednesday. "However, we will have our ZCU annual meeting in Harare towards the end of July and a possible change of directors might make a difference in the approach to the player crisis." Changes could make it possible for some of the sacked white players to resolve their differences with a new ZCU board and return. From the day that the players demanded the reinstatement of sacked former captain Heath Streak on April 2, some directors have been openly hostile towards them. The inference is that these might not be re-elected. The present "best available team" is effectively a very young Second XI well short of Test standards. (PTI)

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