The Zimbabwe Cricket Union (ZCU) today called on ECB chairman David Morgan to honour the commitment he gave in March 2003, that England would tour Zimbabwe in November this year.

‘We are aware of media speculation concerning England’s tour to Zimbabwe, but there has been no formal advice from the ECB to clarify the matter. Obviously we expect that the tour will go ahead,’ said Peter Chingoka, chairman of the ZCU.

‘In light of the uncertainty that appears to exist in England the ZCU has now written to David Morgan, asking him to urgently confirm the commitment he gave on behalf of the ECB to our Board of directors in Harare last March. That commitment was that England would fulfil its scheduled tour to Zimbabwe and those assurances were given to secure Zimbabwe’s tour of the UK last summer,’ confirmed Mr Chingoka.

‘Having honoured our word that we would tour the UK we naturally expect England to reciprocate by touring Zimbabwe. There’s no doubt that relations between the Boards and other nations were strained by England’s refusal to play the World Cup game in Harare. It would be extremely disappointing from our point of view if England were to now review its position on this latest tour,’ said the ZCU chairman.

Zimbabwe successfully hosted five ICC Cricket World Cup 2003 games and has recently completed a full home series with the West Indies. Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Australia are all due to tour the country before the scheduled visit by England.

‘There are many important things to consider with this situation, such as the question of the honour and spirit upon which bilateral series between countries are based. Other factors that the ECB need to consider are the effect that cancellation of this tour would have on the development of the game in Zimbabwe, the unity of the ICC family of cricketing nations and the integrity of the Future Tours Programme that binds us together.

‘We look forward to an early and positive response to our letter from Mr Morgan,’ confirmed Peter Chingoka.

For more details contact:

In Australia: Peter Chingoka, Chairman: 0409 646 215
Mark Harrison, 0423 363 620 or + 44 7776 182 506

In Zimbabwe: Vince Hogg, Managing Director: + 263 912 01274
Lovemore Banda, + 263 912 26710