A club cricketer who threw a ball over the boundary to deny an opposition batsman a debut century has been banned for nine matches.
The delivery by the unnamed bowler, who was playing for Minehead, came as their opponents, Purnell, needed just five runs to win and left batsman Jay Darrell stranded on 98 not out.
As the ball was bowled straight to the boundary, the bowling team conceded four runs and one for a no-ball.
These were added to the extras, rather than to the batsman’s score, meaning Mr Darrell could not complete his hundred.
The unsportsmanlike incident, in a Somerset Cricket League game on Saturday, attracted widespread condemnation.
The league has banned the guilty player for nine matches for bringing the game into disrepute.
A statement by the Somerset Cricket League said: “The Somerset Cricket League has noted the details of an incident that occurred in the Division 2 match between Minehead 2nd XI v Purnells CC, played on 4th August 2018. The SCL Disciplinary Committee has reviewed the incident.
“The incident in its opinion brought the SCL and Cricket in general into disrepute and contained behaviour that was against the Spirit of the Game.
“As a result of this review, a Purnells CC player has been banned for the next 9 completed SCL matches. The SCL have been asked by Purnells CC to clarify that the player banned, is NOT Ronnie Casling, as has been incorrectly reported in a national newspaper,” it added.
Casling was one of the Purnell bowlers and on the end-of-match scorecard, had bowled two balls of a six-ball over, suggesting he was bowling when the match finished.
In a statement, Minehead played down the controversy, saying there were no hard feelings.
“Minehead CC would like to insist that we hold no resentment against Purnell CC or the offending player in regard to the recent incident during our Somerset Cricket League Division 2 Match.
“We believe that both Purnell CC and the SCL Committee have dealt with the matter in the best possible manner and hope that a line can be drawn under the matter as soon as possible.”
Our 1st XI were well beaten today by @MineheadCricket. The unsavoury scenes to end the game can’t be condoned & both the Captain & the player made full & sincere apologies to those involved after the game. The incident will be dealt with internally by the Club.
— Purnell Cricket Club (@purnellcc) August 4, 2018
Purnell, which describes itself as a “friendly village club”, tweeted: “Our 1st XI were well beaten today by @MineheadCricket. The unsavoury scenes to end the game can’t be condoned & both the Captain & the player made full & sincere apologies to those involved after the game. The incident will be dealt with internally by the Club.”
Batsman Jay Darrell, 23 was surprisingly conciliatory in a tweet posted after the game.
He wrote: “Hell of game today shame the way it ended but oh well!!! Thanks for all the support today!! #UTP #Mineheadcc #litter.”