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Home > Cricket > World Cup 2003 > Reuters > Report

Kenya matches could be moved: Bacher

January 17, 2003 16:39 IST

The two World Cup matches scheduled to be played in Kenya next month could still be moved out of the country because of safety concerns, tournament director Ali Bacher said on Friday.

"We are not contemplating any matches being moved but, in the event of a worst-case scenario, we have the structures and capacity to accommodate any changes if ruled by the International Cricket Council," Bacher said.

Kenya has been struggling to allay security fears ahead of the tournament, which is mainly being hosted by South Africa, following a suicide bombing in November when 16 people were killed at a hotel on the Kenyan coast.

An ICC delegation visited the country on January 12 and 13 to assess safety and security but is yet to report its findings.

Kenya's government is due to issue a formal statement later this week reassuring cricket officials and Test nations that the African country can guarantee security for the matches against New Zealand and Sri Lanka on February 21 and 24.

Sri Lanka have confirmed they will play their match in Nairobi but New Zealand have raised concerns over security issues.

An ICC delegation also visited Zimbabwe, due to host six World Cup matches, in November and decided the southern African country was safe enough to host its World Cup matches.

England, Australia, India, Pakistan, The Netherlands and Namibia are scheduled to play one match each in Zimbabwe.

The British and Australian governments have urged their teams not to travel to the troubled country, but the England and Wales Cricket Board reiterated on Tuesday that the England team would honour its fixture in Zimbabwe.

Bacher said he would visit Zimbabwe in the next 10 days to gauge what effect the country's shortage of basic commodities could have on the tournament, and to "get a feel of the situation in Zimbabwe."

Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has been criticised internationally for his controversial land reform programme, a policy opponents blame for the country's deepening economic crisis and food shortages.

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What does Bacher think of himself? Kenya is much more safe and clean than South Africa or Australia. Atleast the people in Kenya are not ...


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