TANZANIA Cricket Association (TCA) has confirmed the postponement of 2020 ICC Men's T20 World Cup Africa Qualifiers until the end of June subject to further review.
The TCA was waiting for communication from the ICC, regarding the fate of qualifiers and the association's Information Officer, Atif Salim confirmed yesterday they have received official communication from the ICC regarding to postponement of the qualifiers.
The qualification event was scheduled to be staged in South Africa from April 25th to May 4th this year, but due to the current coronavirus outbreak the ICC announced to postpone the event.
According to a statement issued yesterday by ICC Head of Events, Chris Tetley, the decision was taken in conjunction with member associations and in line with the relevant government and public health authority advice.
Tetley stated that, "In light of the significant global health concerns at the current time and the restrictions on movement imposed by governments across the world, the ICC has taken the decision to postpone all events up until the end of June subject to further review.
"Our commitment to the health and safety of players, officials, staff and fans is our priority when taking these decisions and we must act responsibly in the best interests of all involved and be guided by official advice. We felt that now was the right time to take a prudent decision on these events before further planning is undertaken and to provide clarity to everyone involved.
"Work will continue on contingency plans and options for both men's qualification pathways. We will provide updates in due course on these plans and decisions on the staging of the remaining events this year. I would like to thank all hosts and participating members for their support and understanding in reaching this position and we are unified in our hopes and intention to get cricket back on as soon as is safe and practical to do so."
Tanzania cricket team Head Coach, Steve Tikolo has expressed his mixed feelings on the postponement of the competitions which were scheduled to take place from 25th April to 4th May 2020 in Cape Town, South Africa.
"We have just received news that this is a welcome move going by the health crisis caused globally by the corona pandemic.
We thank the ICC for this move as the health and safety of the players and participants comes first." "As a team, our preparations for the tournament were on the right track having just returned back home from a practice tour to Zimbabwe. We will now have to reassess the situation and come up with new preparations/training plan once everything is clear regarding the rescheduled dates of the tournament."
The Africa Qualifier will have two sub-regional groups, with the top two teams in each group progressing to the Regional final.
Kenya and Nigeria, the two highest ranked teams as of 1st January 2020, progressed directly to the Regional final.
Tanzania is placed in group A alongside Mozambique, Botswana, Cameroon, Sierra Leone and St. Helena, while group B teams are Uganda, Ghana, Lesotho, Malawi, Rwanda, Seychelles and eSwatini.
Cricket South Africa (CSA) has suspended all cricket, professional and amateur, for the next 60 days after the country's President Cyril Ramaphosa declared a state of disaster of Sunday.
Widespread measures across the country, which include a travel ban on people from high-risk areas, and a prohibition of gatherings of over 100 people, have now halted sporting events, with the Premier Soccer League, Super Rugby and the Two Oceans Marathon also suspended.