BCA pennant committee to have hearing over pitch controversy

The Ballarat Cricket Association pennant committee will have a hearing to decipher what led to the pitch at Darley Park being “unplayable” on Saturday.

Darley and Golden Point were left to walk away from Saturday with three points each after the umpires deemed the pitch unplayable because it was too soft.

The BCA’s five-man committee will sit down at the earliest available time slot that suits all parties with president Rob Florence saying it would try and have the matter sorted as soon as possible.

The BCA did not want to speculate on what might happen, but the hearing will see both sides voice their recollection of what occurred and more importantly, Darley’s version of events of how a junior match was played on Friday night yet come Saturday afternoon’s scheduled start time of 1pm the pitch was not ready for play.

Picture of day one pitch, supplied by Darley.

Picture of day one pitch, supplied by Darley.

Presumably, the main purpose of the hearing will be to decide if anyone was at fault in preparing the pitch which led to the drawn game, therefore leaving the door open to potentially award the full six points to who the committee sees fit.

Golden Point were set to resume at 1-10 in pursuit of Darley’s 200, who was 6-30 at one point after Golden Point sent it in last week.

It is understood the pitch did begin to dry-up and become much more suitable for play by 4pm, but the umpires made an informed call to abandon the match.

Pointies skipper Josh White told The Courier on Saturday that his side was disappointed to arrive at the ground with a pitch that was not fit for play, in a match that it needed to secure to remain on top of the ladder at the break. 

White said even if the pitch was right to go later in the afternoon, there was little incentive for his side to go out to play for a time period that realistically would not have allowed it to chase down the 191 runs, but risk losing nine wickets, by no fault of its own.