Teams fume over abandoned Big Bash match due to dangerous pitch
Geelong’s future as a venue could be in the balance after torrid fast bowling
Melbourne — Cricket Australia (CA) will conduct a “thorough review” of Sunday’s abandoned Big Bash League (BBL) match in Geelong after the Melbourne Renegades-Perth Scorchers clash was called off with 6.5 overs bowled due to safety concerns about the pitch.
Heavy rain at the weekend had seeped under protective covers and left a wet patch at one end of the Kardinia Park wicket, but officials cleared the match to go ahead after ground staff scrambled to rectify the situation.
Umpires then suspended play in the seventh over with Perth 30/2 after Josh Inglis was subjected to a torrid, three-ball sequence from paceman Will Sutherland.
Inglis was struck in the groin, played an inside edge and then missed a delivery that ballooned off the pitch and left wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock bemused.
Boos rang out from the crowd of 6,601 when play was abandoned about 15 minutes later, the first time a match was called off due to an unsafe pitch in the BBL’s 12-year history.
“CA will conduct a thorough review into the extremely frustrating circumstances that have resulted in the game being abandoned and a huge disappointment for fans and players,” the governing body said in a statement.
The teams will share the points if the match cannot be rescheduled, CA added.
Scorchers head coach Adam Voges said he had concerns about the wicket before the first ball. “They [the batters] still copped a few in the stomach but yeah, just thankful that no-one’s been seriously injured out of this,” he said.
“It’s disappointing for all the people who have come out to watch tonight, but ultimately, I think they made the right call.
“We came to win a game tonight and to split the points through no wrongdoing of our own is frustrating.”
Local media slammed venue officials over the pitch’s condition and said the episode could mean the port city near Melbourne misses out on hosting future events.
“At best the abandoned match is unprofessional,” Dan Batten wrote in the Geelong Advertiser. “At worst it is a black mark against Geelong on the national sporting stage.”
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