D-day for Zim Cricket

HARARE - Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) will know whether their bid to host the 2019 Cricket World Cup qualifiers has been accepted when the ICC makes the announcement today.

There are two other bids from the United Arab Emirates while Ireland and Scotland submitted as co-hosts.

The ICC is currently meeting in New Zealand where ZC is represented by board chairperson Tavengwa Mukuhlani and managing director Faisal Hasnain.

With the 2019 Cricket World Cup main tournament taking place in Wales and England, at least 10 teams will vie for two places up for grabs during the qualifiers.  

ZC are hopeful that today’s decision will go their way after ICC chairperson Shashank Manohar paid a courtesy visit to Zimbabwe in August.

The former India Board of Control for Cricket chairperson, who was accompanied by his wife Varsha for the trip, met with the country’s two vice presidents as well as Sports minister Makhosini Hlongwane.

Manohar demanded assurance from the government as far as security guarantees and tax exemptions for the ICC.

“...discussion to do with the World Cup Qualifiers next year due to be held in Zimbabwe...the ICC chair(person) requested that we provide guarantees at two levels; security guarantee for all the teams that will be visiting the country including the athletes and the technical officials and start from the ICC to make sure that the games are smooth,” Hlongwane told reporters after his closed door meeting with Manohar.

“Secondly, to make sure that we provide guarantees in terms of tax exemptions especially for the re-exportables that does come into Zimbabwe...and in that regard...he is going to be getting the guarantees that he requires in order for Zimbabwe to be able to host the World Cup Qualifiers...in” 2018.”

Manohar also expressed confidence in Zimbabwe winning their bid as long as ZC had taken care of the sticking points.

“We had a very constructive meeting and we have discussed the way ahead (on) how to develop Zimbabwe cricket...how we can promote cricket here,” Manohar told reporters.

“That (hosting World Cup Qualifiers) we also discussed about certain things which Zimbabwe has to do once it is done I’m quite confident that Zimbabwe might get it in the October meeting because the decision has to be taken by the board.”

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