Zimbabwe's fate to be discussed

The strife-torn nation's place in the ICC would be decided at the annual conference in Dubai. India, led by Sharad Pawar, are behind Zimbabwe.

updated: July 04, 2008 15:30 IST
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Zimbabwe's fate as a member of the International Cricket Council will be decided in the next two days when the ICC's Executive Board meets here tomorrow to debate the issue amid indications that a face-saving formula could be worked out.

While England and South Africa want Zimbabwe to be expelled from the ICC, the powerful Asian bloc led by India are strongly opposing the move which has raised the possibility of a deadlock on the matter.

England and South Africa recently snapped bilateral ties with Zimbabwe forcing the ICC to put the issue on its agenda for the Board meeting to be held on Wednesday and Thursday.

Even prominent former Zimbabwe players have called for Zimbabwe Cricket's expulsion stating that its officials were filling their own coffers with the money that has been earmarked for developing cricket in the country.

If the Asian countries oppose the move to ban Zimbabwe, the Board members could opt for another solution like barring the strife-torn African country from playing one-day and Twenty20 internationals but retaining its status as a full ICC member. Zimbabwe is already banned from Test cricket.

This will clear the way for England to host the Twenty20 world championships next June without Zimbabwe, as demanded by the British government.

Apart from the Zimbabwe issue, the fate of disgraced West Indian batsman Marlon Samuels and Sunil Gavaskar's replacement in the Cricket Committee will be discussed in the meeting where India will be represented by BCCI President Sharad Pawar.