Wrangle over banning Zimbabwe reaches deadlock

After two long and fractious days, Zimbabwe were still hanging on to their place at cricket's high table last night. The International Cricket Council failed again to resolve the issue of their continued presence and the world game remains in limbo.

If signs were to be gleaned they were that the last-ditch attempt to reach some form of agreement today will go England's way, at least to a limited extent. The chances of achieving any formal suspension have been significantly reduced, but England have refused to budge an inch on their refusal to allow Zimbabwe to compete in the World Twenty20 in England next summer.

India, meanwhile, moved an equal distance in declining to countenance Zimbabwe's non-participation. There have undoubtedly been shifts of position and the firm ground taken by Giles Clarke, the chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board, might have influenced opinion.

All matches in the competition have already sold out – except for the two in which Zimbabwe are scheduled to play – which alone would make it difficult to switch the tournament elsewhere. The ICC will have to move it if England refuse to allow Zimbabwe in without having the necessary support from other nations. But the ticket revenue of some £15m – 90 per cent of which goes to the ICC for distribution to its members – makes a powerful bargaining tool.

Asked if he thought the World Twenty20 would be staged in England, however, David Richardson, the ICC's acting chief executive, replied simply: "Yes." Later he added, perhaps tellingly, perhaps not: "I think it would be sad if we didn't have any of our full members competing, particularly England."

It was clear from the tightness of their lips that ICC delegates were aware of the disaster facing the game and the piecing together of snippets of information suggested Zimbabwe recognised they were in trouble at last. The chairman of their cricket board, Peter Chingoka, was overheard outside the conference room to say: "We're in a difficult situation."

Shortly after, Chingoka and his entourage of lawyers, who had been remarkably bullish the previous day, visited India's delegation in their hotel. India seemingly asked Zimbabwe to consider withdrawing voluntarily from the World Twenty20 while retaining all the membership and financial rights. That might seem a woeful kind of compromise, but it was the best the ECB can hope for and it was rejected simply because Zimbabwe refuse to bow the knee in any way to England. Although there was no official version of how the countries are splitting, it is probable that five are on England's side, pretty astonishing in itself. If Australia and New Zealand are the usual suspects, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Pakistan are the distinctly unusual ones. But a 7-3 vote, or two thirds, is necessary for resolutions to be carried and minds are in any case believed to be changing regularly.

Were England's point to be won it may weaken India's position as the game's powerbrokers. If they lose – and they are prepared to do so rather than alter their stance – the consequences are unthinkable.

In the light of this, the news that the ICC is seeking to establish a formal world Test championship, primarily to save that form of the game, seems faintly ludicrous. But Australia have been asked to expand on their proposal. This presumes that any country is by then willing to play against another country.

The were two decisions. Tied matches in one-day knock-out stages are to be decided by each side batting for an extra over rather than bowl out. In addition players will not be allowed a substitute in international matches if leaving the field for a comfort break. It was enough to make everyone want to go to the toilet.

News
Susan Sarandon described David Bowie as
peopleSusan Sarandon reveals more on her David Bowie romance
Sport
Arsenal supporters gather for a recent ‘fan party’ in New Jersey
football
Sport
sportDidier Drogba returns to Chelsea on one-year deal
Arts and Entertainment
The Secret Cinema performance of Back to the Future has been cancelled again
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
Balmain's autumn/winter 2014 campaign, shot by Mario Sorrenti and featuring Binx Walton, Cara Delevingne, Jourdan Dunn, Ysaunny Brito, Issa Lish and Kayla Scott
fashionHow Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Grey cradles Ana in the Fifty Shades of Grey film
filmFifty Shades of Grey trailer provokes moral outrage in US
News
BBC broadcaster and presenter Evan Davis, who will be taking over from Jeremy Paxman on Newsnight
peopleForget Paxman - what will Evan Davis be like on Newsnight?
Life and Style
fashionCustomer complained about the visibly protruding ribs
Voices
The new dawn heralded by George Osborne has yet to rise
voicesJames Moore: As the Tories rub their hands together, the average voter will be asking why they're not getting a piece of the action
Sport
Dejan Lovren celebrates scoring for Southampton although the goal was later credited to Adam Lallana
sport
News
newsComedy club forced to apologise as maggots eating a dead pigeon fall out of air-conditioning
Arts and Entertainment
Jo Brand says she's mellowed a lot
tvJo Brand says shows encourage people to laugh at the vulnerable
Life and Style
People may feel that they're procrastinating by watching TV in the evening
life
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Evan Davis: The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing to take over at Newsnight

The BBC’s wolf in sheep’s clothing

What will Evan Davis be like on Newsnight?
Finding the names for America’s shame: What happens to the immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert?

Finding the names for America’s shame

The immigrants crossing the US-Mexico border without documents who never make it past the Arizona desert
Inside a church for Born Again Christians: Speaking to God in a Manchester multiplex

Inside a church for Born Again Christians

As Britain's Anglican church struggles to establish its modern identity, one branch of Christianity is booming
Rihanna, Kim Kardashian and me: How Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Olivier Rousteing is revitalising the house of Balmain

Parisian couturier Pierre Balmain made his name dressing the mid-century jet set. Today, Olivier Rousteing – heir to the house Pierre built – is celebrating their 21st-century equivalents. The result? Nothing short of Balmania
Cancer, cardiac arrest, HIV and homelessness - and he's only 39

Incredible survival story of David Tovey

Tovey went from cooking for the Queen to rifling through bins for his supper. His is a startling story of endurance against the odds – and of a social safety net failing at every turn
Backhanders, bribery and abuses of power have soared in China as economy surges

Bribery and abuses of power soar in China

The bribery is fuelled by the surge in China's economy but the rules of corruption are subtle and unspoken, finds Evan Osnos, as he learns the dark arts from a master
Commonwealth Games 2014: Highland terriers stole the show at the opening ceremony

Highland terriers steal the show at opening ceremony

Gillian Orr explores why a dog loved by film stars and presidents is finally having its day
German art world rocked as artists use renowned fat sculpture to distil schnapps

Brewing the fat from artwork angers widow of sculptor

Part of Joseph Beuys' 1982 sculpture 'Fettecke' used to distil schnapps
BBC's The Secret History of Our Streets reveals a fascinating window into Britain's past

BBC takes viewers back down memory lane

The Secret History of Our Streets, which returns with three films looking at Scottish streets, is the inverse of Benefits Street - delivering warmth instead of cynicism
Joe, film review: Nicolas Cage delivers an astonishing performance in low budget drama

Nicolas Cage shines in low-budget drama Joe

Cage plays an ex-con in David Gordon Green's independent drama, which has been adapted from a novel by Larry Brown
How to make your own gourmet ice lollies, granitas, slushy cocktails and frozen yoghurt

Make your own ice lollies and frozen yoghurt

Think outside the cool box for this summer's tempting frozen treats
Ford Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time, with sales topping 4.1 million since 1976

Fiesta is UK's most popular car of all-time

Sales have topped 4.1 million since 1976. To celebrate this milestone, four Independent writers recall their Fiestas with pride
10 best reed diffusers

Heaven scent: 10 best reed diffusers

Keep your rooms smelling summery and fresh with one of these subtle but distinctive home fragrances that’ll last you months
Commonwealth Games 2014: Female boxers set to compete for first time

Female boxers set to compete at Commonwealth Games for first time

There’s no favourites and with no headguards anything could happen
Five things we’ve learned so far about Manchester United under Louis van Gaal

Five things we’ve learned so far about United under Van Gaal

It’s impossible to avoid the impression that the Dutch manager is playing to the gallery a little