Will New Zealand tour Zimbabwe?
15 Apr 2005
By: James Nixon
Talk has immediately turned to New Zealand's tour of Zimbabwe in August following the Sri Lankan series with New Zealand Cricket following the situation in Zimbabwe very closely.
Stephen Fleming has said he'll be reading a lot, watching the situation closely and trying to educate himself on what effect the tour would have. Fleming was quoted as saying "If the information that I read suggests it's probably not wise to go and that will make a difference, then that's something I'll consider."
In what is bound to help the players make a decision on the matter is that Martin Snedden, the CEO of New Zealand Cricket has announced that no players would be penalised if they choose not to tour as a protest against President Robert Mugabe's regime.
Helen Clark, the New Zealand Prime Minster said earlier this week "Personally, I wouldn't be seen dead there" and "Zimbabwe has just had a rigged election, which has produced a result which is simply unbelievable. I ... wouldn't go near it." but further to that she said the New Zealand government would not get involved with New Zealand Cricket in canceling the tour.
Rod Donald, the leader of the Green party has written to New Zealand's top 25 players urging them not to tour and has called on Foreign Affairs Minister Phil Goff to lobby the International Cricket Council for an international boycott of Zimbabwe.
New Zealand Cricket would face a US$2 million fine from the ICC if the tour didn't go ahead for anything other than security reasons.
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