Harare: Zimbabwe's cricket chief on Thursday welcomed signs English cricketers would press on with their World Cup match in the South African country, arguing the security situation was "under control".
Peter Chingoka, chairman of the Zimbabwe Cricket Union (ZCU), said, "We have always welcomed the English cricketers," adding that his organisation was urging all the international teams scheduled to play their matches in Zimbabwe next month to honour their obligations. He was speaking shortly after English cricket officials indicated they were likely to play in a match here on February 13 despite the British government's calls for a boycott.
Pressure had been mounting on the English and Australian cricket teams to boycott their matches. There have been growing concerns over security here following food riots last week in the major cities of Harare and Bulawayo and the murder of an Australian tourist in Victoria Falls last weekend. But Chingoka stressed the security situation was not a cause for concern.
"Our security officials tell us everything is under control," he said. He added that he was confident they would be able to host the matches "very safely". English cricket officials have said they might revise their decision if riots continue in Zimbabwe.