Even before the Zimbabwe players could recover from the blow of seeing their cricket board getting suspended by the ICC, they received another big blow from the apex body of the game. The financially-struggling Zimbabwe Cricket was suspended by the ICC last week on the ground of political intervention. ICC rules do not allow the politicians to have a say in the cricket board’s matters.
Consequently, the governing body of the game suspended Zimbabwe Cricket for their failure to keep the sport free from government interference. As a result of the decision, ICC funding to Zimbabwe Cricket is also frozen. Not only that, but representative teams from the country is also not allowed to participate in any ICC events. Later, reports came out suggesting that the Zimbabwe players are even ready to play for free.
However, the players’ nightmare turned into reality on Tuesday when the ICC replaced both the men and women’s team of Zimbabwe from T20 World Cup qualifiers. Now, Namibia will compete in the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Qualifiers while Nigeria will replace Zimbabwe in the men’s tournament.
The women’s tournament gets underway in Scotland later this month. Namibia will join hosts Scotland, Bangladesh, Ireland, Netherlands, Papua New Guinea, Thailand, and the USA to compete for the two remaining spots at the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2020.
On the other hand, Nigeria will be the fourteenth team in the men’s tournament set to take place in UAE in October. The other teams are Hong Kong, Ireland, Jersey, Kenya, Namibia, Netherlands, Oman, Papua New Guinea, Scotland, Singapore and two teams from the Americas Final.
Sikandar Raza reacts
As soon as the news broke out, Zimbabwe star Sikandar Raza took to Twitter to express his utter surprise over the same. Talking a sly dig at the ICC, the right-handed batsman said that he is speechless. He also asked the ICC no to shy away from revealing more surprises, writing
“Just speechless at this decision by @ICC. So if @ICC have anymore surprises for us please don’t be shy, just get them ALL out now so that we can plan our unemployed lives a bit better. Regards An unemployed ,frustrated and out of opportunities Cricketer”
An unemployed ,frustrated and out of opportunities Cricketer pic.twitter.com/SHdMVbdecu
— Sikandar Raza (@SRazaB24) August 6, 2019
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