Zimbabwe Cricket officials have advised Cricket Ireland that Ireland Men’s planned tour to Zimbabwe in April cannot proceed at present due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation in the country, Ireland Cricket Board said on Monday (8).
Ireland was due to fly to Harare on 28 March and play a three-match T20I series, followed by a three-match ODI series in April.
According to a Cricket Ireland press release, Zimbabwe Cricket and Cricket Ireland have agreed to reschedule the tour for a later date.
“We’re obviously disappointed, but to be honest, it is not an unexpected announcement from our Zimbabwean counterparts.” Richard Holdsworth, High Performance Director for Cricket Ireland, said. We appreciate their efforts and willingness to try and make the tour possible, but in the end the health and safety of players and support staff must be of primary consideration.”
“We’ll now look at whether alternate fixtures can be arranged during that period, which is a crucial window in advance of a busy home season and in a T20 World Cup year.”
“This places even greater importance on the proposed Ireland Wolves tour in February / March given the need to provide many of our players the volume and quality of cricket we need to keep the momentum in player development we have been seeing over the last few years. We expect to be providing an update on the Wolves situation in coming days.”
The postponed ODIs against Zimbabwe were not part of the ICC World Cup Super League – those fixtures against Zimbabwe are scheduled to be played in Ireland this summer.
The Ireland Men’s year ahead is still a potentially busy 12 months, with three visiting teams during the summer, several scheduled tours and a T20 World Cup in October.