Cricket Australia will investigate the farcical abandonment of NSW’s one-day clash with Victoria amid a call to sack the officials involved in the match.
A dangerous pitch led to Sunday’s fixture at North Sydney Oval ending mid-run chase, with the Bushrangers awarded victory via the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method – usually reserved for rain-affected matches.
Officials discussed the issue for more than 90 minutes following the match before ruling Victoria would be awarded a run-rate bonus point. The verdict ended NSW’s finals hopes and but ensured Victoria will join Western Australia and South Australia in the finals unless Tasmania manage to collect two bonus points in a big win over Queensland on Tuesday.
CA has decided against shifting Western Australia’s clash with the CA XI at North Sydney to an alternate venue following Sunday’s abandonment. However, the inaugural women’s day-night Ashes Test is also slated to be held at the North Sydney venue next month, and CA will be desperate to avoid similar scenes.
“Cricket Australia will conduct a thorough investigation of the circumstances around this abandonment… and will revert to the teams with those findings,” a CA spokesman told Australian Associated Press.
“At this stage, a different wicket will be used for the next match on Tuesday and CA will monitor conditions.”
On Sunday, Victoria reached 4-108 after 26 overs in their pursuit of 145 when umpires called the game off.
It prompted an angry response from Cricket NSW chief executive Andrew Jones, who denied conditions had changed so considerably to be deemed unsafe since the Blues batted in the first innings.
“That is a ridiculous decision and the umps should be held accountable,” Jones said 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 ladder leaders – almost certain to be WA – will advance directly to Saturday’s final in Hobart. The teams that are second and third on the ladder will face off in Thursday’s elimination final, also in Hobart.