In what is another positive development for Zimbabwe as a host of sporting events, New Zealand Cricket has said that it would like to resume cricketing ties with the country, following a fruitful meeting between the sports ministers of the two countries in Wellington earlier this week.
David Coltart, the Zimbabwe sports minister, met his New Zealand counterpart, Murray McCully and the positive result of the meeting was the change of stance by the New Zealand government regarding cricketing tours to the southern African nation. NZC chief executive Justin Vaughan confirmed that he later met Coltart at Christchurch and was convinced the climate was conducive to resuming ties.
“I am aware that the Minister for Sport and Recreation, Murray McCully, had a positive meeting with Mr Coltart in Wellington earlier this week,” Vaughan said. “It is clear from that meeting that our government’s position is that they would not oppose the Black Caps touring Zimbabwe next year.
“The tour by the Black Caps in May 2011 was the principal topic of my discussion with Mr Coltart, however we are also considering the possibility of other cricketing exchanges, such as the potential for a New Zealand A team to tour Zimbabwe at some stage in the near future.”
New Zealand had been reluctant to send any of its teams to the country over the last few years, citing the unstable political and security situation. The side was due to tour last year but rescheduled the trip for June 2010. However, New Zealand wanted it to be postponed again to 2011 or play the series in a neutral venue after the New Zealand government assessed the security situation and gave a negative report.
Though New Zealand have indicated a change of heart with regard to touring Zimbabwe, Vaughan said the standard protocol of security checks will be followed before confirming any tour.
“It is important to stress that any tour by New Zealand cricket teams to Zimbabwe would need to be prefaced by full safety and security checks, which are standard practice for New Zealand Cricket,” Vaughan said.
Cricket in Zimbabwe has undergone a facelift in recent months, with an improvement in the basic facilities and domestic structure. That has translated itself into better performances in the field, with recent victories against India and West Indies.
Zimbabwe also successfully hosted the tri-series involving India and Sri Lanka and the sport got a big boost when the team made it to the final of the tournament. Zimbabwe Cricket is also optimistic of returning to Test cricket in 2011.
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Post InfoThis entry was posted on Wednesday, June 16th, 2010 and is filed under Cricket, General.
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