The International Cricket Council (ICC) has given new membership to three countries. The highest governing body of cricket has added Mongolia, Tajikistan, and Switzerland as associate members at its 78th Annual General Meeting (AGM).
The ICC said in a statement that Mongolia and Tajikistan were given the 22nd and 23rd memberships in the Asia region and Switzerland has become the 35th member of the European region. Moreover, the total number of ICC members has now increased to 106. Of these, 12 Test-playing nations are full members. The remaining 94 countries are associate members.
The Mongolian Cricket Association was established in 2007. Later in 2018, it was officially included in the National Sports Council. Currently, cricket coaching is available in 16 schools over there. Cricket was also included in the 2019 National Youth Games.
Not only men’s but also women’s cricket is very popular in Mongolia. Currently, 39 percent of school cricket players are women. Mongolia is looking forward to hosting the National Youth Green Games in September this year. There is also the possibility of the inclusion of cricket there.
Switzerland played cricket for the first time in 1817, almost two hundred years ago. However, the country’s cricket board, Cricket Switzerland (CS), officially started its journey in 2014. There are currently 33 cricket clubs in Switzerland, where the junior cricket program is run at an equal pace.
The Tajikistan Cricket Federation was formed in 2011. The women’s and junior cricket infrastructure has also been built with the help of the country’s Sports Ministry and the Olympic Committee. At present, there are 22 men’s teams and 15 women’s teams under the federation.
On the other side, Zambia, which was suspended in 2019 AGM, has been terminated due to “continued non-compliance” with ICC Membership Criteria. Besides that, Russia has also been suspended and has until the next ICC AGM to demonstrate compliance or risk having its membership terminated, according to the statement.
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