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Old April 9, 2007, 09:08 AM
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Default Bangladesh justify ICC faith, says Speed

Bangladesh justify ICC faith, says Speed

ST JOHN'S, Antigua, April 8, 2007 (AFP) - ICC chief executive Malcolm Speed insisted on Sunday that the governing body had been right to stand by Bangladesh when many feared the Asian side were out of their depth.

Speed praised the progress made by Bangladesh who have defeated India and South Africa at this World Cup.

"We've been criticised for many years for including Bangladesh at the top table of world cricket. What they've done in the last couple of weeks is to justify their existence here," said the ICC chief.

Ireland, a non-Test nation, also beat Pakistan in the group phase - a result that effectively knocked the 1992 champions out of the tournament and Speed added: "I've said on many occasions that the commercial powerhouse for cricket is India and Pakistan.

"India and Pakistan haven't made it through to the final eight here. If we go back to the 1999 World Cup (hosts) England didn't make it through to the final six and in 2003 (hosts) South Africa, West Indies, Pakistan and England all failed to make the last six.

"These things happen. From a commercial perspective there are some negatives there but if you lose matches you go home."

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