Welcome to the first in a regular feature here on CricketEurope, as we take a look at some of the recent news from around the associate & affiliate cricket playing world that you may have missed.
We start with some troubling news emerging from Bulgaria. It was reported on Cricbuzz that the Bulgarian Cricket Federation president Nikolay Kolev is embroiled in a scandal after a current affairs programme in the country alleged that he propositioned a student of his to have sex with him in return for higher marks in an exam.
Kolev was a lecturer at the National Sports Academy at the time, and has since been sacked from that organisation. It was expected that he'd resign from the BCF, but has continued after most of the board members gave him their backing.
Allegations of corruption in relation to the mismanagement of ICC funds - first reported on CricketEurope two years ago - have also continued, now accompanied by allegations of racism against players of Pakistani and Indian origin. ICC Europe isn't investigating Kolev whilst a police investigation is in place, and is remaining tight-lipped about the other allegations.
In more cheery news, Rwandan national team captain Eric Dusingizimana has set a new world record for the longest ever net session this past week, batting for 51 hours straight to help raise money for the Rwandan Cricket Stadium Foundation, which hopes to construct an international stadium in the country.
During the feat Dusingizimana faced a handful of deliveries from former UK prime minister Tony Blair. Reports aren't clear as to whether Blair's deliveries were of the spin variety. Dusingizimana beat the previous record of 50 hours, set last year by India's Virag Mane.
As already reported here, Hong Kong made waves this week by signing up Michael Clarke for their T20 Blitz tournament that will take place in two weeks time. Dutch international Michael Swart will also be involved in the tournament, as will Nepalese international Sandeep Lamichchane and UAE international Muhammed Naveed. In addition five India first-class players and two Australians with Big Bash League signed for the league.
The Hong Kong Women's Premier League is also getting in on the international signing action, with the announcement this week that Australian internationals Sarah Coyte and Kirsten Beams will each play for one of the two teams involved. Japan's captain Shizuoka Miyaji will also take part, as will her international teammate Mai Yanagida.
Continuing our trek around the globe, it was confirmed recently that the Amini Park ground in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea has been approved by the ICC to host PNG's upcoming WCLC matches against Kenya. The ground has hosted regional East Asia Pacific tournaments in the past, but these will be the highest level matches ever played in the country.
In the Americas, the process that would appear to be leading to USACA being expelled from the ICC continued as four advisory groups were set up to "implement future growth and development plans". They would appear to be laying the groundwork for an interim board to take control should USACA be expelled at the ICC's annual conference in Edinburgh later this year.
In on-field action, the German national women's team visited Bologna last weekend for a three game series against hosts Italy. Germany batted first in the first match - a T20 contest - and scored 113. They then restricted Italy to 103 to win by 10 runs, aided by some excellent fielding that saw them record six run outs.
The second match was a 40 over game, with Italy batting first and scoring 187-9. Germany struggled in the slightly longer format, and were bowled out in the 30th over for 126, losing by 61 runs. They were able to bounce back in the final match - another T20 - though, restricting Italy to 120-5 before knocking off the runs with 8 balls to spare to win by 6 wickets.
Earlier this week, Vanuatu played a three match series against Denmark as preparation for Division 5 of the World Cricket League continued. All three matches were played at Loughton Cricket Club in Essex, though the first was abandoned due to rain. Denmark won the second match by four wickets after bowling Vanuatu out for 94, then scored 229-8 in the third match, eventually winning by 57 runs.
Vanuatu will play a further warm-up game against Oman on Tuesday once both teams have arrived in Jersey. Other than that and the aforementioned WCL5 and WCLC matches, the only upcoming international action will be later today when Portugal play host to Alderney.