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ICC still not prepared to intervene in Zimbabwe

Reuters

Posted: Nov 30, 2005 at 1956 hrs IST

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has said it is saddened by the state of Zimbabwean cricket but is still not prepared to get involved in internal matters.

"I am extremely saddened for the cricketers and people of Zimbabwe," ICC chief executive Malcolm Speed told a news conference on Wednesday.

"There has been disintegration in Zimbabwe cricket. We are getting daily reports on the situation there but the policy of the ICC board remains we don't get involved in internal matters unless invited to do so by the cricket administrators of that country," he said.

Zimbabwe captain Tatenda Taibu quit recently, warning that cricket in his country would die unless urgent changes were made to the way the game is run.

Taibu claimed threats had been made to his life and his family after he, other leading players and six provincial bodies had called on Zimbabwe Cricket Union chairman Peter Chingoka to resign.

Zimbabwe cricket has been in crisis since Heath Streak was sacked as team captain for criticising selection policy in April 2004.

It led to a boycott of international cricket by more than a dozen white players, some of whom did not return to the fold even after Streak ended his dispute in February.

The team's results have been poor, leading to the sacking of coach Phil Simmons in August.

Speed said it was a difficult decision for the ICC member countries whether to get involved in the internal affairs of a member country.

"This issue will come up next when Zimbabwe is to play Test or international cricket. I am sure the board will discuss the matter at its next meeting," he added.

Zimbabwe are due to tour West Indies in April-May and play two Tests and five ODIs.

The ICC suspended Zimbabwe from playing Test cricket in 2004 following the Streak affair.

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