Zimbabwe Cricket is going through a rough patch after International Cricket Council (ICC) barred them from any international competition. But the senior players have come together in this dire situation and vouched to play for free to keep cricket alive in the country.
Zimbabwe players willing to play for free
Meanwhile, ICC suspended Zimbabwe over a failure to keep the sport free from government interference. The decision means International Cricket Council funding to Zimbabwe Cricket will be frozen and representative teams from the country will not be able to participate in any ICC events. The suspension had put Zimbabwe’s participation in the ICC T20 Qualifiers at stake.
But the players have come together at this hour and decided to play for free to keep the cricket alive. The decision comes after expressing their desperation to play in the qualifiers in a bid to participate in the ICC World T20 next year in Australia. However, a report in ESPNCricinfo suggests that the players ready to play for free as they have been assured that they will be paid later.
“We will play for free as long as we can see the light at the end of the tunnel,” a senior squad member told ESPNcricinfo. “Our next assignment is the (T20 World Cup) qualifiers. I will play for free as long as we are assured that we will be paid eventually. We will play qualifiers for the sake of cricket staying alive and for free but to be paid late and not never,” he added.
Meanwhile, despite ICC’s suspension, Zimbabwe are still technically able to play in bilateral series. It is likely that ICC will appoint match officials for bilateral series that Zimbabwe host but without funding it seems impossible for Zimbabwe Cricket to host any bilateral series.