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Thatscricket - News - Cricket: Judges explain uplifting of ban on Zimbabwe's Campbell

Published: Thursday, November 8, 2001, 21:10 [IST]
 
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Harare: A black judge and a white judge in Zimbabwe have given a full account of why they banned Zimbabwe batsman Alistair Campbell from two Test matches and three internationals then suspended the ban for a year.[an error occurred while processing this directive]Justice Simbarashe Muchechetere and David Bartlett issued their explanation on Wednesday through the Zimbabwe Cricket Union (ZCU).Campbell was found guilty two weeks ago, following a hearing before the two judges, of breaking two International Cricket Council Codes of Conduct related to public statements detrimental to the sport.The Zimbabwe left-handed opener made observations to the 'Daily Telegraph' about the recent decline of Test and international cricket standards here.He commented on how they may have been affected by the ZCU policy of bringing more blacks into the team and into administration through the efforts of an "Integration Task Force".The Union denies this implies a racial quota system, preferring to use the term "goals". This was upheld by the two judges in their review. Zimbabwe has lost all 14 of its last One-day international matches, widely attributed to poor morale and squabbles over pay.Campbell is said to have told the 'Daily Telegraph' "the race thing has spilled onto the field" and the "team was torn apart".Muchechetere and Bartlett declared the comments "completely unhelpful and counter-productive".The judges also said the comments "create disharmony and conflict" and publicise "matters which can and should be resolved by discussion in private between players and officials".Campbell had, they said "apologised unreservedly for having spoken to the press about these issues". However, they concede he did not comment on the personal performance of black players, nor did he say their inclusion adversely affected team performance.But if he makes further "ill-chosen and ill-considered words to the press it would be regarded in serious light".Muchechetere and Bartlett said that the Zimbabwe team generally had become so inconsistent that only Andy Flower and Heath Streak meet the minimum standards for Test Cricket.In a joint personal view of Campbell's own playing abilities, they opined, "At his best he stirs memories of David Gower and even Graeme Pollock (two of the best left-handers in the history of the game)."But he lacks discipline and concentration. His batting average of 26.93 after 50 Tests would see him long since dropped from almost every other team in the world."Campbell is not with the Zimbabwe squad now touring Bangladesh.

AFP
Copyright AFP 2001

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