Sports Reporter

Zimbabwe Cricket look to have begun the process of atoning for their past sins, with particular focus now on the women’s game.

That was the biggest take-away from the unveiling ceremony of two domestic competitions for the ladies, namely provincial ODI and Twenty20 tournaments held on Wednesday at Harare Sports Club’s VIP enclosure.

Four teams, Mountaineers, Midwest, Eagles and Tuskers, will take part in both competitions. “Our very existence, as Zimbabwe Cricket, is premised on us playing cricket, and it is what the fans demand,” said ZC chairman Tavengwa Mukuhlani.

“They want to see us playing cricket, be it Test cricket, One-day International or Twenty20 cricket and now women’s cricket. No format of the game has been more affected by the Covid-19 pandemic than the women’s game, with their last bit of action coming May 2019, during the International Cricket Council Women’s Qualifier Africa.

The Lady Chevrons then lost their slot at the global qualifiers, owing to a dispute between the Sports and Recreation Commission and Zimbabwe Cricket, that saw Zimbabwe temporarily suspended from the ICC.

It is Mukuhlani’s hope that these two competitions will begin a process of healing, after an extended period of inactivity owing to both the suspension and the pandemic.

“I am not too sure if we will ever be able to make up for that loss (slot to the qualifiers), we can only try to keep the group together, which we have, and improve going forward,” said the chairman.

“You can imagine some of these ladies were not on contracts, and eked their living elsewhere. Those that still don’t have central contracts have allowances. The next stop is for cricket to offer a platform for them to play cricket, which is exactly what these two tournaments provide.

“We hope that after these two programmes, and a few we have lined up, the ladies will come out stronger,” he said.