ICC seek report after crowd trouble in India

 

CRICKET: The International Cricket Council has asked for a report from match referee Mike Proctor after crowd trouble marred West Indies's victory over India in a one-day international in Jamshedpur yesterday.

"It is disappointing that a game has been interrupted and Mike's report will help us understand why this has taken place," said ICC chief executive Malcolm Speed. "Player safety is critical and incidents of this type should not happen."

Speed said the ICC would not comment further on the Jamshedpur incidents until Proctor's report had been received.

Play had to be stopped for 10 minutes when the crowd, fearing an India defeat, threw plastic bottles and other missiles on to the field towards the end of the contest.

Fires were lit in the stands by the home supporters, advertising boards were ripped up and the players were forced to flee the field for the safety of the dressing-rooms.

West Indies went on to win by four wickets in the first of a seven-match series. Ramnaresh Sarwan was the match-winner - hitting a four off the final ball of the match - as India's Anil Kumble became just the third player in history to take 300 one-day international wickets, joining Pakistan's Waqar Younis and Wasim Akram.

Speed reiterated the ICC's commitment to security in match venues. "I know that all boards work hard to try and ensure that (trouble) does not occur and it will be important for us to understand why it has happened on this occasion," he said.

Jamshedpur successfully hosted one-day internationals in 1999 and 2000.

On another security issue, organisers of the 2003 World Cup will join a security delegation from the ICC in Zimbabwe later this month to decide if the country can stage fixtures in next year's tournament.

Ali Bacher, executive director of Cricket World Cup 2003, was confident Zimbabwe would get the go-ahead. "I'm as confident as I can be that World Cup cricket will take place in Zimbabwe."

ICC president Malcolm Gray said they would be concerned with safety and security for teams and officials only.

He said that while some countries had imposed sanctions on Zimbabwe "no government in any part of the world has identified sporting sanctions as an appropriate tool to achieve a political outcome".

Zimbabwe will play three of their six group matches in Harare and three in Bulawayo, which includes games against India, England, Australia and Pakistan. The Australian team refused to tour Zimbabwe in March after their government advised its citizens not to travel.