Mali on whistle-stop visit to Zimbabwe
Ray Mali, the president of the International Cricket Council (ICC), arrived in Zimbabwe on a six-day working visit, travelling with his wife Peggy. The pair arrived in Bulawayo on the eve of the opening one-day international between Zimbabwe and South Africa at Bulawayo, and were met at the airport by the chairman of Zimbabwe Cricket (ZC), Peter Chingoka.
Mali plans to assess how the ICC can help the embattled ZC ahead of a possible return to Test cricket. Speaking on his arrival, he said: "I am here to get first-hand information so that I can be well-informed whenever I talk to my board about Zimbabwe in the future."
Chingoka said ZC was confident that his visit would be beneficial for cricket in the country "because Mali understands the need and challenges of transforming the sport from elitism to one accessible to the majority. Before he took over the ICC, Ray was president of Cricket South Africa and we worked very well with him then."
"What is happening now is a continuation of that relationship because, as ICC president, he has said he wants to see the game taken to new heights in all the ten full member countries."
During his stay, Mali will tour cricket facilities in Matabeleland North, Bulawayo and Harare Metropolitan provinces.
Warren Carne is a freelance cricket writer based in Zimbabwe.