Dangerous pitch mars one-dayer in Sydney

By Rob Forsaith,

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    The battle for finals spots in the domestic one-day cricket competition has descended into high farce after a fixture at North Sydney Oval was abandoned mid-chase.

    A dangerous pitch led to Victoria defeating NSW on Sunday via the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method, usually reserved for rain-affected matches.

    Cricket Australia (CA) officials discussed the issue for more than 90 minutes following the match before ruling Victoria would be awarded a run-rate bonus point.

    That verdict ended NSW’s finals hopes and all but ensured Victoria will join Western Australia and South Australia in the finals.

    The visitors reached 4-108 after 26 overs in their pursuit of 145 when umpires called the game off.

    “That is a ridiculous decision and the umps should be held accountable,” Cricket NSW chief executive Andrew Jones posted on Twitter.

    “So pitch was safe when @CricketNSWBlues batted? Makes no sense. All officials involved should be fired immediately.

    “It should be a No Result. Conditions didn’t change all game so if it was dangerous for one side it was dangerous for the other.”

    The absurd finish, which came following a bouncer-laden over from Sean Abbott, was greeted by a chorus of boos from the crowd.

    It is unclear if the venue will host Tuesday’s fixture between Western Australia and the CA XI as planned.

    CA will be desperate to avoid similar scenes in the inaugural women’s day-night Test that is slated to be held at North Sydney next month.

    Test pacemen Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc, who snared three wickets, Abbott, and Doug Bollinger all troubled batsmen with their bounce on the unsafe deck.

    Earlier, schoolboy Will Sutherland helped Victoria skittle the one-day title holders for 144 in 42.2 overs.

    The son of CA chief executive James Sutherland, who was touted as a first-round AFL draft pick before opting to focus on the summer sport this year, claimed figures of 4-11.

    © AAP 2018

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    The Crowd Says (35)

    • Roar Guru

      October 16th 2017 @ 1:16pm
      Cadfael said | October 16th 2017 @ 1:16pm | ! Report

      If the wicket didn’t change then it was poor umpiring to stop the game. If the review shows this is the case, the game should be declared a “no result”.

      • October 16th 2017 @ 6:38pm
        JoM said | October 16th 2017 @ 6:38pm | ! Report

        Yep. The wicket didn’t change, but maybe the speed of the bowling did. Vic deserved to win that game anyway, but if the two Victorian umpires were so concerned then why did they wait so long to call it off, why did they wait until the required number of overs had been played to give the Vics a bonus point which they needed to make the finals.

        • Roar Guru

          October 17th 2017 @ 12:02am
          Chris Kettlewell said | October 17th 2017 @ 12:02am | ! Report

          Were they really two Victorian Umpires? That is a very interesting point about when it was called off though. Pretty sure 25 overs have to be bowled to constitute a match, they call it off after 26 are bowled. That does seem really dodgy. If it was truly dangerous it should have been called off well before that. If not, then let it run. Of course, on an unpredictable, difficult pitch, there’s always the chance that if one more wicket fell, there could be a collapse that could actually cost Vic the match. So to conspire to find a way to end it in a way that guarantees Vic the win just an over after reaching the point required for it to count as a completed match does seem really dodgy!

          • October 17th 2017 @ 12:45am
            Don Freo said | October 17th 2017 @ 12:45am | ! Report

            Yes but CA needs to stop playing cricket at minor grounds if they can’t deliver the goods. NSW gifted the Shield to Victoria 2 years ago when they had to forfeit an outright because of a sub-standard pitch. Victoria would not have made the final without that 6 points.

            That’s 2 times in 3 years by the NSW Cricket Association. How incompetent. As a tough fast half-back for the West Coast Eagles, Andrew Jones was on the money. His bleating here is crazy and very weak. His association produced the pitch.

            …and Vics would have won anyway. 24 overs to get 30 more runs.

            • October 17th 2017 @ 7:18am
              JoM said | October 17th 2017 @ 7:18am | ! Report

              They would easily have got the runs Don, but at that point their run rate wasn’t high enough to take the bonus point and they needed that point to make the finals, not just the win.

            • Roar Guru

              October 17th 2017 @ 9:23am
              Chris Kettlewell said | October 17th 2017 @ 9:23am | ! Report

              North Sydney Oval is the same ground where most of the other matches have produced 300+ innings. You can hardly blame it on them playing on suburban grounds. The fact is that for a competition like that where you get hardly any crowd, playing on those sorts of suburban grounds is much better all around than playing at places with 50,000+ empty seats greeting the players and fans.

              I agree the Vics would have won anyway. But it is interesting that they’d played almost 70 overs of cricket before determining it was an unsafe pitch, when the pitch didn’t change in all that time, and the timing of the determination just happened to be one over after enough overs were bowled to constitute a match and therefore give Vic the win instead of a N/R. Not saying the Vic’s wouldn’t have won anyway, but it’s a very interesting timing that just seems rather dodgy.

              • October 17th 2017 @ 9:33am
                Don Freo said | October 17th 2017 @ 9:33am | ! Report

                My point is the carelessness of producing such a pitch.

                For top level cricket in N SW to produce that twice in 3 years, Andrew Jones should concerned. His job is administration of cricket.

                He was calling for the sack of those umpires and the referee. The greatest incompetence was the playing condition in his charge. Do we call for his sacking?

                His response is staggering. It was all under his watch.

              • Roar Guru

                October 17th 2017 @ 10:10am
                Rellum said | October 17th 2017 @ 10:10am | ! Report

                Yes NSW need a review I think because this has become a continuing problem for them over a few years now.

              • Roar Guru

                October 17th 2017 @ 10:55am
                Chris Kettlewell said | October 17th 2017 @ 10:55am | ! Report

                If they actually are dangerous pitches then yes, but I think a lot of the time that’s overkill in calling it that. This was a tough pitch to bat on, but both sides batted on it, it had 70 overs bowled and no batsmen were injured.

                A couple of years ago a NZ warm-up at Blacktown was called off because they claimed the pitch was dangerous to bat on. That was right after the CA XI side declared one wicket down for over 600. So if anything it was too easy to bat on.

                There’s been some weird calls regarding “dangerous” pitches.

              • Roar Rookie

                October 17th 2017 @ 11:28am
                Matthew Pearce said | October 17th 2017 @ 11:28am | ! Report

                I remember that. Finch and Carters getting double centuries, Finch nearly a triple. “Dangerous” alright.

                I don’t quite understand the criteria for a “dangerous” pitch. It can’t just be that blokes are getting bounced; Burns was out hit wicket from a Starc bouncer just a few games ago and there was no problem with that pitch.

                The only issue that really could have been playing into things was the lighting, and if that’s the case they should have just stayed with that story, instead of saying the pitch was dangerous.

            • October 17th 2017 @ 4:21pm
              qwetzen said | October 17th 2017 @ 4:21pm | ! Report

              “That’s 2 times in 3 years by the NSW Cricket Association.”

              And let’s not forget the NSW v NZ game at Blacktown that was abandoned.

              • Roar Guru

                October 18th 2017 @ 7:59am
                Chris Kettlewell said | October 18th 2017 @ 7:59am | ! Report

                Yes, I mentioned that one above. The pitch that New Zealand said was too dangerous for them to bat on despite the CA XI having just scored 1/600 on that exact pitch. It looked pretty patchy, but clearly it wasn’t causing too many problems for Finch and Carters!

                That’s part of my problem here. If really poor pitches have been rolled out that have been dangerous to play on they need to do something. But a pitch where the first team just scored 1/600 hardly seems like a dangerous pitch, and a pitch where they’ve got 26 overs into the second innings and it’s not changed in all that time, might be a tricky pitch to bat on, but why suddenly declare it dangerous and call off the match the moment enough of the match has been played for it to be declared a Victorian victory rather than a N/R?

                That shield match that was called off I remember a lot of complaints saying that there was nothing wrong with it and it was totally fine to play the match on. But that was ignored and they just awarded the points to Vic.

                A bit of uneven bounce doesn’t suddenly make a pitch dangerous. It seems like we are having games called off because of poor pitches where those pitches are probably still better than many that would have been used in the past with no problems.

    • October 16th 2017 @ 6:36pm
      John Erichsen said | October 16th 2017 @ 6:36pm | ! Report

      It will be a most interesting explanation of how the pitch suddenly changed in nature after apparently being fine to play on for just over 70 overs. I mean, Gotch and Thomson were in the middle of an unbeaten 42 partnership, with strike rates comparative with the rest of the day’s play. Given all the distractions this year, surely cricket could well do without any further drama. It seems not…

    • Roar Guru

      October 16th 2017 @ 6:45pm
      Rellum said | October 16th 2017 @ 6:45pm | ! Report

      I went to bed last night thinking it was a lighting issue only to find out this absurd dangerous pitch issue. Since when has one raising ball suddenly made the game to dangerous to play? I don’t usually comment of umpires but that was a joke. The players clearly though so as well.

      • October 17th 2017 @ 12:48am
        Don Freo said | October 17th 2017 @ 12:48am | ! Report

        There were many fliers in both innings but it was fun to watch. Batsmen have got armour plating on every part of their body these days. A bruise or two was the biggest risk. Good for batsmen to test their mettle.

        Vics were leg and head bying their way to victory.

        • Roar Guru

          October 17th 2017 @ 9:43am
          Rellum said | October 17th 2017 @ 9:43am | ! Report

          I didn’t see any fliers when Cummins and Starc were bowling, I don’t remember the commentators commenting on crazy bouncing deliveries. They had no idea that was the reason to end the match. It should be obvious to all if the pitch is unfit for a game.

          • October 17th 2017 @ 9:51am
            Don Freo said | October 17th 2017 @ 9:51am | ! Report

            The replays on The Roar snippets show them.

            • Roar Guru

              October 17th 2017 @ 10:07am
              Rellum said | October 17th 2017 @ 10:07am | ! Report

              Yes, the one or two that were suddenly so concerning. Watching live I didn’t get that feeling at all.

            • Roar Guru

              October 17th 2017 @ 4:19pm
              spruce moose said | October 17th 2017 @ 4:19pm | ! Report

              It’s a post Phil Hughes world now though.

              They just can’t take the risk of a batsman getting knocked on the back of the neck if they could avoid it.

              • Roar Guru

                October 17th 2017 @ 9:10pm
                Rellum said | October 17th 2017 @ 9:10pm | ! Report

                Well then lets just get to the pointy end of it and ban short balls, that will eliminate all the risk to head injuries, ban anyone who breaks that rule and stop games immediately if there is any inconsistent bounce.

                That is obviously an extreme reaction but if we are all going to be worried if a Phil Hughes type incident could happen again then that is what the game will end up coming too to avoid any chance of it.

      • October 17th 2017 @ 4:27pm
        qwetzen said | October 17th 2017 @ 4:27pm | ! Report

        “one ball” isn’t right. Any pitch which allows a pudgy 36yo Doug Bollinger to ping batters is more than a bit suss.

        • Roar Guru

          October 17th 2017 @ 9:11pm
          Rellum said | October 17th 2017 @ 9:11pm | ! Report

          Doug the rug can still pin them down.

        • Roar Guru

          October 18th 2017 @ 8:02am
          Chris Kettlewell said | October 18th 2017 @ 8:02am | ! Report

          Hey NSW had to play on it too. If it was suss it should have just been called a N/R!

          NSW had two of the fastest bowlers in the country bowling on that pitch, and as far as I can see there wasn’t a single injury to a batsman. Can’t be too dangerous!

          • October 18th 2017 @ 5:32pm
            qwetzen said | October 18th 2017 @ 5:32pm | ! Report

            You can’t say that something isn’t dangerous because no-one has been hurt. (Although I’m all in favour of that rationale when it comes to driving.)

            I saw most of the end of the NSW v Vic and thought it was a dud call. I think something that may have influenced the umps was that Vic not out batter Blake Thomson was lousy against the short ball. Like P Hughes was.

    • October 16th 2017 @ 8:30pm
      Doctor Rotcod said | October 16th 2017 @ 8:30pm | ! Report

      Seeing that it took the match committee 90 minutes to work out who had won, I don’t think the Victorian umpires(how did that happen?) connived at a result to further favour the Vics, seeing that they had already won under the D/L/S system.
      Besides Victoria had a superior NRR, so would go through on that basis anyway.
      A ‘no result’ is two points for NSW and surprise,surprise! third place

      • Roar Guru

        October 16th 2017 @ 9:17pm
        Rellum said | October 16th 2017 @ 9:17pm | ! Report

        They connived for 90 mins to work out if Vic should get a bonus point not just the win, which to me, as a QLDer, seems a bit of a joke.

        • Roar Rookie

          October 16th 2017 @ 9:59pm
          Matthew Pearce said | October 16th 2017 @ 9:59pm | ! Report

          How can they base their bonus point decision on the DLS required rate? It should only have been in comparison to NSW’s run rate, this whole situation is a massive farce.

          • Roar Guru

            October 16th 2017 @ 10:04pm
            Rellum said | October 16th 2017 @ 10:04pm | ! Report

            I am more concerned going forward that the slightest hint of danger to the batsmen meant calling off the game. That line of thinking will lead to a very bland bat dominated game if it is the new line in the sand for dangerous play.

            • Roar Rookie

              October 16th 2017 @ 10:41pm
              Matthew Pearce said | October 16th 2017 @ 10:41pm | ! Report

              Agreed. It’s weird, where’s the precedent for that decision? Nothing about this makes sense.

              • October 17th 2017 @ 12:50am
                Don Freo said | October 17th 2017 @ 12:50am | ! Report

                Won’t it be fun if Tassie win with a bonus double point and knock them out anyway?

              • Roar Guru

                October 17th 2017 @ 9:41am
                Rellum said | October 17th 2017 @ 9:41am | ! Report

                Ha, yeah super fun.

      • Roar Guru

        October 16th 2017 @ 11:57pm
        Chris Kettlewell said | October 16th 2017 @ 11:57pm | ! Report

        The bonus point basically protects Victoria from the chance of Tasmania getting a bonus point victory of their own.

        • October 17th 2017 @ 7:20am
          JoM said | October 17th 2017 @ 7:20am | ! Report

          If they get a double bonus point against Queensland they will knock Victoria out.

          • Roar Guru

            October 17th 2017 @ 9:27am
            Chris Kettlewell said | October 17th 2017 @ 9:27am | ! Report

            To get a double bonus point you need to basically double the oppositions score. So if they bat first, you need to score the runs inside 25 overs, and if you bat first then you need to bowl them out for less than half your score. Double bonus points don’t happen too often. They are basically there so that if the team batting first completely crumbles for a really, really horrible total, despite good batting conditions, the target of trying to get the runs in 25 overs can potentially still provide some big hitting and entertainment. But they come about pretty rarely.

            • October 17th 2017 @ 8:07pm
              Doctor Rotcod said | October 17th 2017 @ 8:07pm | ! Report

              Seeing that Tas are now (8pm AEDST) 3/101 off 22.4 , it seems unlikely.
              Andrew Jones frothing and fulminating about officials is a bit gob-smacking seeing that it was the NSW Cricket Associations job to make sure that all their pitches were fit for purpose

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