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Zimbabwe is safe, declares ICC

London: World Cup matches will take place in Zimbabwe as planned early next year, the ICC said Thursday.

“As things stand at the moment, it is the view of the delegation that there is no good reason in terms of the safety and security of the players to relocate any of the six matches planned to be played in Zimbabwe in February and March, and they should continue as scheduled,” chief executive Malcolm Speed said.

“In the intervening weeks, ICC and the Zimbabwe Cricket Union will continue to monitor events in Zimbabwe very carefully and if there is any significant deterioration in the perceived levels of safety in Zimbabwe this issue will be revisited immediately.”

Speed confirmed if Zimbabwe became “too dangerous” the matches would be relocated to primary hosts South Africa. The same also applied to the two matches taking place in Kenya.

He said 12 out of the 13 member boards of the ICC had voted in favour of the delegation's report. The Bangladesh delegate was unavailable.

England said they would play their World Cup match against Zimbabwe in Harare.If the Australian team does not play they may be forced to forfeit their matches.

Sri Lanka are concerned about playing in Kenya, team manager Ajit Jayasekara said. “We have had a similar type of problem earlier,” he said, referring to the Tamil conflict, “but this is a different threat.”

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