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    July 06, 2005

    New Zealand v Zimbabwe, BCCI v ICC and Tests v ODIs

    A few months after a political party in New Zealand began a campaign to prevent the New Zealand cricket team from touring Zimbabwe, the situation turned murkier when New Zealand Cricket refused to cancel the tour for fear of a compensation claim from the Zimbabwe Cricket Union. New Zealand's foreign minister, Phil Goff, upped the ante today by asking for Zimbabwe to be banned on account of its government's poor human rights record. Mike, a New Zealander, is following the developments on his blog.

    That is a pretty dicey line to take. You could easily argue that just as countries with poor human rights records have no place in sport, neither do countries which are not democracies. Which means out goes Pakistan from the cricket calendar and out goes China from international sport, hardly a situation which is likely to happen.

    The problem is that while it is blatantly obvious that what is going on in Zimbabwe is state sponsored terrorism, it is not for sporting bodies to decide on it. Their governments need to take a stand. If it means having to fork out money as compensation when affected boards invoke the penal clause in the ICC's tours agreement, then they need to decide. Either you can have the morals or the money.

    I, for one, have been terribly disappointed with the way the BCCI has approached the issue. India are scheduled to tour Zimbabwe barely two weeks after New Zealand land there. The three teams will be participating in a triangular one-day series. But it is plainly obvious, given the past history and plainly obvious greed.

    While I'm carping about the BCCI, there was a report a few days ago about the BCCI opting to appeal ICC Appeals Commissioner Michael Beloff's dismissal of the previous appeal against the six one-day internationals ban on Sourav Ganguly. I am totally with Anand Vasu at Cricinfo, who thinks that the BCCI's decision is flawed. Meanwhile, the ICC has appointed Justice Albie Sachs, a South African, to hear the various issues raised by the BCCI. It is just unnecesarily complicating things. What if the judge decides that Ganguly was let off lightly and makes him sit out eight matches, i.e. the upper end of the scale?

    Adam Gilchrist seems sick and tired of one-day cricket and is really looking forward to the real thing.

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    Thus spake Jagadish @ 6:04 PM |
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