Pakistan’s tour to Zimbabwe in doubt due to cash crisis

Zimbabwe are due to host the 2019 World Cup qualifiers starting next month that tournament will be unaffected by the home union’s cash crisis as it is an ICC event.

Pakistan
Pakistan. (Photo by Anthony Au-Yeung/Getty Images)

The Pakistan players will be busy for over a month now with the prestigious Pakistan Super League (PSL) coming up. The PSL will start on 22 February and will pan out all the way till 25 March. The Pakistani team will then play a T2oI series against West Indies which will be followed by Test series against England and Ireland. Later they are scheduled to play against Scotland and Zimbabwe.

However, the tour of Zimbabwe seems to be under the cloud at the moment. The African side is due to host Pakistan across all three formats in June while Australia were to also travel for a bilateral series but those fixtures are now in doubt.

The Zimbabwe series could well be postponed

Zimbabwe Cricket’s cash crisis is threatening to interrupt their upcoming home international season. Hosting any team for a bilateral series is often a costly affair. The visiting team needs to be provided with various facilities, logistics for which the cricket boards shell out from their pockets. Although some good amount of revenue is generated, the viewership for Zimbabwe’s matches is not often on the higher side.

Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC) has been trying to negotiate a with both countries attempting to arrange an ODI tri-series instead, but even that will be a financial setback. ZC’s managing director, Faisal Hasnain, told ESPNcricinfo that “Finances may not allow the [Pakistan] series to go ahead because we don’t get a lot from our TV contract, and the series ends up – the production costs result in huge losses.”

Given the current cash situation, he said the series could also be postponed. “Given our current cash situation, in order to balance our books, we may actually have to either renegotiate the format or we may have to postpone it until such time as we are ready to play. We are looking at all of that to see whether we have the tri-series only, the Pakistan series only, or we change the format. We are just working through, considering our options at the moment,” he added.

Zimbabwe are due to host the 2019 World Cup Qualifiers starting next month that tournament will be unaffected by the home union’s cash crisis as it is an ICC event.