Cricket makes a pretty good metaphor for a country. It’s a game that takes time to wind up and hit its stride. It has fast moments and dull patches and joys and disappointments.

So it’s quite apt — and disturbing — that the International Cricket Council (ICC) suspended Zimbabwe’s membership last week over its failure to keep the sport free of government interference. The ICC suspension follows the government’s move in June to suspend the Zimbabwe cricket board and replace it with a committee. The result? The ICC funding tap is turned off and the country cannot take part in ICC events.

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