Norfolk Alliance match ends in controversy as team walks off

Will Rogers in full flight for Horsford during their win over his former side Great Witchingham on S

Will Rogers in full flight for Horsford during their win over his former side Great Witchingham on Saturday Picture: TIM FERLEY - Credit: Archant

Saturday's Norfolk Alliance Division Six match between Hales and Loddon and Bradfield A ended in acrimonious circumstances following a rules dispute.

Bradfield skipper Steve Bidwell led his side off the pitch after a row over whether a home bowler should be removed from the attack after sending down two deliveries over waist height in the same over.

The match finished with Bradfield on 69-5 in the 21st over after being asked to bat first - and it went down as a concession, with Hales taking maximum points and the visitors having 25 points deducted for not fulfiling the fixture.

The problems started when Hales and Loddon bowler Bill Moores delivered two high no balls. Bradfield umpire Peter Abbs, one of their players, said Moores should come off immediately.

Home skipper Mark Stewart said he would only remove the bowler at the end of the over and when no common ground could be reached the game was called off.

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Abbs had earlier been dismissed for a golden duck, caught in the gully by Milton Lindsay off a delivery from Matthew Buckingham, who was allowed to complete that over after bowling two above waist height no ball deliveries.

'It was one of the most deflating experiences in 32 years of playing for the club. I have never experienced anything like this before,' said Hales and Loddon veteran Lindsay. 'At the end of the day we are playing recreational village cricket. My team-mates and I felt very frustrated at the manner in which the game ended and the fact that a solution could not be found to allow us to continue playing the match.'

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In First Class cricket authorities have brought in a rule stating that bowlers who bowl two above waist height no balls should be removed from the attack immediately and this is enforced in the top two divisions of the Alliance, where there are appointed umpires. But at lower levels, where matches are being umpired by players, it is believed bowlers get a little more leeway, with an immediate removal from the attack coming after three high no-balls.

A spokesman for the Norfolk Alliance confirmed an investigation into the incident was taking place but said there would be no further comment at this stage.

Bradfield skipper Bidwell said: 'We have put our side of the story to the Alliance - it is our opinion that the bowler should have been taken out of the attack immediately and that the match was conceded by Hales.'

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