THE Board of Control for Cricket in India on Wednesday postponed the country’s tour of Zimbabwe which had been scheduled to take place in June.
The inaugural season of the Indian Premier League ends on June 1 and India have announced a tri-nations tournament involving Pakistan and hosts Bangladesh between June 8 and 14, which leaves no time for a trip to Zimbabwe.
“We have decided to put off the tour of Zimbabwe. The hectic calendar makes it quite impossible and we have conveyed the decision to the Zimbabwe Cricket Union,” said BCCI secretary Niranjan Shah in a statement.
Following the tournament in Bangladesh, India travel to Pakistan to play in the Asia Cup, which begins on June 24.
The sub-continent team will then visit Sri Lanka in July for three Tests and five one-day internationals.
The news is a big blow to Zimbabwe Cricket, who will now not play a series until they host Sri Lanka in November.
Zimbabwe Cricket have been deprived of hosing matches over the years with human rights abuse and policital vilence being sited by the countries which were scheduled to be hosted by Zimbabwe.
Last year in September Australia failed to come to Zimabwbe after the country’s Prime minister John Howard and his Foreign Minister Alexander Downer openly said they were reluctant to let their team travel to Zimbabwe.
Â “I am increasingly of the view that the upcoming cricket tour of Zimbabwe should not proceed and would like to hear the views of Australian cricketers,” Howard was quoted as saying.
West Indies also postponed their series last year citing political violence. England has since 2003 failed to fulfil its fixtures with Zimbabwe.
Meanwhile, the Zimbabwe under 15 team will not be attendingn the Under 15 International ChampionshipsÂ in the West Indies after being denied visas yesterday.
By Paul Nyakazeya