Kurt Bayer is a Herald reporter based in Christchurch

Arrests after protest at Black Caps test match against Zimbabwe

Zimbabweans wave flags during the 36th over of the test cricket match between New Zealand and Zimbabwe in Bulawayo. Picture / AP
Zimbabweans wave flags during the 36th over of the test cricket match between New Zealand and Zimbabwe in Bulawayo. Picture / AP

Ten people have been arrested in Zimbabwe after an anti-government protest during a cricket match against New Zealand.

During the first day of the Black Caps' second test at Bulawayo's Queens Sports Club overnight Saturday, people stood, waved flags, and sang the national anthem during the 36th over to protest the 36 years of President Robert Mugabe's time in power.

Some people ran around the boundary with flags but play was not impeded during the peaceful protest.

Zimbabwean newspaper The Standard reported that 10 people were later arrested.

One of the protest co-ordinators, Samuel Meso, said they were detained by police for five hours.

They were only released following the intervention of the Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR), Meso told The Standard.

"We went to Bulawayo with our gowns so that we would watch the cricket match. The place was so militarised and at 36 overs, we stood to sing the national anthem in our gowns as one of our creative protests," he said.

"At that time ZRP officers came and shoved us out and took us to Bulawayo Central Police Station."

Last month, an online petition called for New Zealand to boycott the Zimbabwe tour as a show of protest against Mugabe's regime.

Protests and strikes over unpaid wages, corruption, and the troubled African country's disastrous economy has been causing unrest in the capital of Harare.

The Black Caps scored 582/4d in their first innings of the second and last test match.

Zimbabwe are currently 55/0, with day three's play due to start at 7.30pm (NZ time).

- NZ Herald

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