Sunday, 13 May 2007

Ben on...don't play Zimbabwe

While news has been slow on the domestic scene, there has been action in other cricketing countries. India has avenged it's World Cup loss to Bangladesh. The West Indies have begun their tour of England. But the biggest news of the moment is that the Australian government has instructed the Australian cricket team not to go on their tour of Zimbabwe.

The issue of a potential boycott began to be raised during the World Cup. This was followed by hand wringing by the government and an even number of pro and anti comments by former players. It looked to be heading in the same direction as previous debates over tours to Zimbabwe, which ultimately left everyone except the ICC looking meek. It has taken hard man John Howard to finally take definitive action to cut cricketing ties with Mugabe's Zimbabwe.

Someone had to do it, and I'm glad it was Australia. It means so much more for the strongest cricketing nation to pull out of a tour. (Also, however, I feel uncomfortable about a government restricting its citizens from travelling, so I am rather two-facedly happy that it wasn't New Zealand that took this drastic step when it was an issue here a couple of years ago.)

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