On a day of farcical developments in cricket, the ostrich (aka the ICC) finally took some much delayed action
on the circumstances surrounding Zimbabwe's position as a test nation and matches played against this current Zimbabwean side. However it was rebuffed by the ZCU when the board didn't meet
ICC Chief Executive Malcolm Speed who had in fact been invited by the ZCU in the first place. Speed had given the ZCU 24 hours to sort out all issues with the rebel players so that the team which plays Australia in the test series would be a full-strength one, including the rebel players.
I wonder why the ostrich took so long
to start talking tough on this matter. It was on April 2nd
2004 that Heath Streak resigned as Zimbabwe captain
when his demand for reconstitution of the selection panel so it had former test/first-class cricketers was rejected. So for over 45 days, the ICC kept quiet, relying on the ZCU to sort out the matter in-house. Meanwhile, a Zimbabwe team led by Tatenda Taibu, who in the process became Test cricket's youngest ever captain
, was routed in two Tests by Sri Lanka, with the tests lasting 3 and 4 days each. Zimbabwe's next opponents were Australia, who've been the best test side in the world for nearly the last decade.
I am concerned that the ICC didn't act before Sri Lanka's tour. Do Zimbabwe's twin thrashings at the hand of Sri Lanka, by an innings and nearly 250 runs each, not discredit test cricket any less than the possibility of Australia piling up 1000 and shooting Zimbabwe out in both innings for sub-100 totals? Why did the ICC wait until it was Australia's turn to play? Is test cricket sacrosanct only when it comes to Australia?