|Photos||Video & Audio||Blogs||Statistics||Archive||Games||Mobile|
Steven Price reports that the net might be closing around Peter Chingoka, Zimbabwe Cricket's long-serving chairman
Steven Price in Harare
April 17, 2009
Features : Hope floats
News : 'Yesterday's man' Chingoka breaks silence
News : ICC highlights poor relationship between Zimbabwe board and players
News : Zimbabwe take tentative steps towards Test return
News : ICC meeting goes ahead without Chingoka
News : Chingoka slapped with EU sanctions
Players/Officials: Peter Chingoka
Sites: Cricinfo ICC Site
One of the rarest of cricketing dinosaurs finally emerged from cover in Dubai this week.
Peter Chingoka, Zimbabwe Cricket's chairman since 1992, has been almost invisible since he was forced to miss the last ICC executive meeting in Australia after being banned from entering the country because of his links to the Mugabe regime.
With the roadshow back in the five-star comfort of Dubai, Chingoka was on safe ground. As the ICC's longest-standing executive member - his 17-year tenure dwarfs the next most senior member, Kenya's Samir Inamdar who was appointed in 2005 - it was only right that he attended.
But back in Zimbabwe, Chingoka has been completely anonymous. The general consensus is that he has been keeping a deliberately low profile following the appointment of David Coltart as the minister for education, sports and culture under the new joint government.
For now, Coltart's priority is to try to rebuild Zimbabwe's once impressive but now almost completely ruined education system. But insiders suggest that he is already formulating plans to tackle cricket, which is one of his passions, and some suggest that could see a complete clearout of the ZC hierarchy.
Under the old Mugabe regime, it was widely believed that Chingoka and other senior officers were in effect protected by their contacts to senior Zanu-PF officials inside the government.
While Mugabe and his party still wield considerable power, it is diminished. Coltart recently briefed journalists that he needed to get his facts in order before he summoned Chingoka and others for a meeting.
When it happens, Chingoka is likely to be subjected to a far tougher grilling than he has ever faced before, either internally or from the less-than-tigerish ICC executive on which he has expertly forged enough alliances to be able to sidestep some of the trickier situations in recent years.
For now, Chingoka is back in the environment he enjoys the most, although he will miss the next shindig, the ICC's centenary jamboree in London in June, because he is also unwelcome in the European Union.
But whether he is still around when the next-but-one meeting is held in October is quite another matter. Even the dinosaurs eventually had their time.
Till 1992 there was no thought about South Africa playing in the World Cup, but Mandela's words changed that immediately. Such was the power of Mandela
Having troubled the English batsmen with his speed and accuracy, Mitchell Johnson is now preparing for the mind games ahead of the third Ashes Test in Perth
After Darren Bravo's superb effort in Dunedin, a look at some other famous match-saving innings in Tests
If India can change their bowling philosophy during a watertight tour and deliver the results, it will be an incredible achievement. Otherwise we will be back to expecting the batsmen to clean up
The ability to respond to challenges that are beyond the daily call is diminished by overkill, but that is precisely the task ahead of Cook and Co
Mitchell Johnson may not be a gigantic, horned, fire-breathing dragon with seven heads - but he could not have done much more damage if he were
Two very different men will have the honour of captaining their countries in their 100th Test with the Ashes at stake