Zimbabwe Cricket chairman hits back March 22, 2008

Bullish Chingoka comes out fighting

Cricinfo staff

Peter Chingoka, the Zimbabwe Cricket chairman, has given an upbeat interview to the Sydney Morning Herald, although he refused to be drawn on some of the more contentious issues affecting his country.

In a week when the ICC cleared the Zimbabwe board of financial wrongdoing, although still accused it of "serious financial irregularities", Chingoka was understandably bullish, further buoyed by his own position within the ICC hierarchy.

"Your company does its books, and sometimes money gets sent to the wrong places," Chingoka told the newspaper's Alex Brown. "We have adopted a new accounting protocol. KPMG [the independent auditors appointed by the ICC] found that there was no misappropriation from any individuals. The audit showed no single individual benefited from this. I am happy."

Asked about the many accusations from within Zimbabwe accusing him of mismanagement, Chingoka was equally dismissive. "If players have these opinions, then they must produce evidence. Our books are clean in that respect. Ask the players what the problem is, not me. There is always going to be criticism. I am not going to run around with a flag saying I'm innocent."

But on other issues, he was less forthcoming. He refused to discuss Australia's refusal to tour in 2007 or on the ongoing problems he is having obtaining a visa to enter the UK or on his arrest in 2006 on charges of breaching Zimbabwe's draconian foreign exchange regulations.