Earlier this week, Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) officials have announced that the 2019-20 domestic season is now cancelled and will not declare winners in either the first-class competition or the 50-over tournament. Cricket in Zimbabwe has been suspended since March 18 and the country has been on lockdown since March 30 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The premier domestic competitions – the first-class competition, the Logan Cup, and the List A contest, the Pro50 Championship – were originally supposed to be completed by the end of April until government provisions suspended all sporting activities in the country. At the time of writing, Zimbabwe has recorded 34 cases and 4 deaths from the virus that killed more than 200,000 worldwide.
Prior to the suspension of cricket in the country, Eagles were on top of the first-class points table, five ahead of Mountaineers, while Tuskers were leading the 50-over tournament, with Mountaineers in second place, with each team due to play eight first-class matches and eight List A matches and at the time of the suspension.
Meanwhile, in the List A tournament, Rhinos had played four matches and the rest five. “We were looking forward to the conclusion of our season, but seeing what is happening in our country and elsewhere across the world, we realised it was not realistic for us to expect our competitions to resume anytime soon,” Hamilton Masakadza, ZC director of cricket said.
“ZC therefore decided to void the 2019/20 season with immediate effect and we will not declare a winner or award any of the trophies as teams had not played an equal number of games when the season was curtailed,” Hamilton added. Zimbabwe also had their home series against Ireland, scheduled for one Test and five T20Is in March-April, postponed.
ZC now enter their off-season with their next fixtures due to be three ODIs in Australia in June followed by three ODIs against each of India and Netherlands at home at the start of the next season in September-October. Zimbabwe, who were ranked 12 on the previous ICC ODI rankings have been winless in their last three bilateral ODI series.
In India, the virus-hit Indian Premier League (IPL) was postponed indefinitely, missing its original April-May window. Meanwhile, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has announced that no professional cricket will be played in England and Wales until July 1 at the earliest. The T20 World Cup is slated to be held in Australia from October 18 to November 15 remains uncertain.
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