Africa Games T20I Status Confusion: Some Matches Not Recognized

Africa Games T20I Status Confusion: Some Matches Not Recognized

Confusion over T20I Status at Africa Games

The recent Africa Games witnessed a mix-up in communication, resulting in some matches being granted T20I status while others were not. The International Cricket Council (ICC) clarified that fixtures involving South Africa’s men’s and women’s teams, as well as Zimbabwe’s men’s team, were not considered T20Is. However, games between the other six men’s teams and seven women’s teams were recognized as T20Is.

The confusion arose after Cricket South Africa (CSA) inquired about the official status of the matches. According to the ICC’s “Classification of Official Cricket” document, all T20 matches played under ICC regulations are considered internationals, except for those involving A teams or age-group sides.

South Africa sent an emerging women’s team and a university men’s team to the Africa Games due to player commitments elsewhere. Zimbabwe selected an under-25 men’s side but fielded a first-choice women’s squad. The other participating countries, all Associate nations, sent their strongest available sides and believed they were playing internationals.

The miscommunication raised concerns for South Africa and Zimbabwe, who are Full Members of the ICC. They questioned whether the results would affect their T20I rankings. CSA also expressed concerns about the impact on 16-year-old wicketkeeper Karabo Meso, who played at the Africa Games and was subsequently named in the senior squad to face Sri Lanka.

Additionally, there were concerns about the infrastructure in Accra, particularly the suitability of the cricket venues. CSA intervened, and a ground consultant from Zimbabwe assisted in preparing the pitch and outfield.

The Africa Games organizers were contacted for comment but had not responded at the time of writing.