Zimbabwe Cricket coach Heath Streak reinstated and fired again

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Streak and his coaching staff were sacked once again.

Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) on Monday reinstated the national team coaching staff only to terminate their contracts later in the day.

The drama had started after the national team’s failure to qualify for the 2019 ICC World Cup following a defeat at the hands of the UAE in their final qualifier.

The cricketing board had demanded that the entire coaching staff step down after the loss or they would all risk being dismissed through a letter from ZC managing director Faisal Hasnain.

However, head-coach Heath Streak and his fellow coaches had initially defied the orders, claiming unfair treatment at the hands of the board.

Zimbabwe publication NewsDay has reported that Streak and batting coach Lance Klusner were served with the letters of their contract termination through their lawyers on Monday.

Streak and his staff had defied the ultimatum to resign.

Streak and his staff had defied the ultimatum to resign.

According to the report, the coaches’ representatives were initially informed that the ultimatum to dismiss their clients had been withdrawn by the board.

“After extensive consultations with our client on the position of the law, our client has resolved to unreservedly retract all and any communication leading to the ultimatum to resign and the subsequent dismissals against your clients.

“For the avoidance of doubt Zimbabwe Cricket has withdrawn the decision to summarily dismiss your clients,” part of the letter sent by ZC’s legal representatives to the coaches’ lawyers read.

But, on Monday afternoon, the coaches’ representatives were sent another letter, this time for the termination of their clients’ contracts with ZC.

“The process of recruiting new coaches has begun and I can safely say that we will have new coaches for the national team by end of April.” ZC board chairman Tavenga Mukuhlani said.

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Asia Cup shifted to UAE over India-Pakistan cricket row

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Cricket’s Asia Cup has been moved from India to the United Arab Emirates over Pakistan’s refusal to cross the border, as relations simmer between the arch rivals, the Asian Cricket Council said Tuesday.

The biennial event was due to be held in India in September, sparking protests from the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) who called for the event to be relocated.

“This year’s Asia Cup is moved out of India to UAE and will be held from September 13-28,” Sultan Rana, the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) development and event manager, said.

India has suspended bilateral cricket ties with Pakistan since the 2008 attacks in Mumbai, which New Delhi blamed on militants based across the border.

However India has continued to square off with Pakistan in international events like the 2016 Asia Cup in Bangladesh, the World Twenty20 at home and the 2017 Champions Trophy in England.

The Asia Cup has been marred by strained Indo-Pak relations since its inception when the UAE hosted it in 1984.

Two years later, India pulled out of the event in Sri Lanka, while Pakistan refused to send its team to India when it hosted the cup in 1991.

With Pakistan and India unable to host, Bangladesh held three straight Asian Cups from 2012 to 2016.

Rana said six Asian teams will compete in the 50-over Asia Cup.

“India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Afghanistan are the five top teams while, there will be a qualifying round to select the sixth team,” said Rana, a former Pakistan first class player.

Meanwhile, the ACC Emerging Asia Cup was also jeopardised earlier this month when India refused to send their team to Pakistan to compete.

“Emerging Cup will now be hosted jointly by Pakistan and Sri Lanka in December this year,” said Rana.

India will play its Emerging Cup matches in Sri Lanka.

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Iceland to play maiden international cricket match against Switzerland

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The Iceland cricket team. Image - Krikketsamband Islands/Twitter.

Krikketsamband Islands (Iceland Cricket Board) have announced that the country will play its first-ever international match against Switzerland this August.

Iceland will be touring London in the summer and will play two T20s and an ODI against the Swiss on August 28 and 29 at St. George’s College in Weybridge.

Neither of the matches will have an official ICC status.

An agreement to the play the three international fixtures in England has been reached between the Iceland Cricket Board and Cricket Switzerland.

Along with the three matches between the two countries, Iceland will also be taking on an MCC (Marylebone Cricket Club) XI at London.

Jakob Robertson, the Chairman of the Iceland Cricket Board, expressed delight at the latest development.

“Since cricket came to Iceland in 1999, the sport has been growing steadily and our national team has often played visiting cricket clubs, as well as touring England and Czechia. We’ve worked really hard to organize our first international fixture and we are beside ourselves with excitement in anticipation of the tour,” he said in a press release.

Switzerland is currently an affiliate member of the ICC while Iceland have ambitions for the same as they chase a membership of the European Cricket Council.

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