Canada cancels cricket tour of Zim over health concerns

Canada’s cricket team has cancelled its tour to Zimbabwe this month because of health reasons.

Zimbabwe Cricket spokesperson Lovemore Banda told the Associated Press on Monday that the one-day tour, scheduled to run from March 18 to 26, was off after the Canadian government issued a health warning for the African nation.

“We’ve cancelled the tour because there are concerns about Canada being able to field a strong side in Zimbabwe as well as taking into account the Canada government’s health advisory for Zimbabwe at this time,” the Canadian Cricket Board wrote to Zimbabwe Cricket this week.

A serious cholera outbreak inside Zimbabwe has resulted in close to 4 000 deaths. But Zimbabwe Cricket officials insist touring teams are not at risk of contracting the disease because of better sanitary conditions available to professional sportspeople and tourists.

The tour would have been the Canadians’ first major overseas series against a full member country of the International Cricket Council. The matches were also going to form part of Canada’s preparations for the World Cup qualifiers in April.

Last month, New Zealand’s July tour of Zimbabwe was postponed after the Kiwi government raised safety and health concerns.
Zimbabwe Cricket immediately announced India as replacements for a tri-series that is also expected to feature Kenya.—Sapa-AP

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