ICC Holds Talks With UK Government

ICC Holds Talks With UK Government

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"Unacceptable that he enjoys  corporate hospitality on an English ground"

ICC officials met with representatives of the ECB and British government officials in London last week to discuss the ongoing situation regarding Zimbabwe's tour to England in 2009.

It is reported that Malcolm Speed, the ICC’s chief executive, and Ray Mali, the president, met with Giles Clarke, the ECB’s chairman, David Morgan, the ICC’s president elect, and Andy Burnham, the minister for media, culture and sport. It has been widely reported that the government will ban Zimbabwe from entering the UK to play a bilateral series in May and June 2009. If that is the case then the ECB will not be liable to pay damages to Zimbabwe Cricket. But both the ICC and ECB are keen to avoid any similar action for the ICC World Twenty20 which follows as that would have massive implications and could lead to the whole tournament being moved elsewhere.It is thought that the issue of Peter Chingoka, the ZC chairman, was also discussed. Chingoka was barred from entering the UK last October because of what government sources said were close links between him and the ruling regime of Robert Mugabe. He is due in London to attend the annual ICC annual meeting in June and were he to be barred then that meeting might also be relocated. It is believed a compromise whereby he is allowed in just to attend the meeting might be acceptable to all parties. However, even if Chingoka is permitted to enter in June, there is no assurance that he would be allowed in for the longer duration of the ICC World Twenty20. A source close to the government told cricinfo that while is might be okay for him to attend a private meeting, it was “unacceptable that he might be seen enjoying corporate hospitality on an English ground”. The issue of Chingoka might be sorted before then. An independent report into allegations of serious financial mismanagement within Zimbabwe Cricket is expected to be presented at the ICC board meeting later this month. 

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