West Indies v Australia T20Is - Women's
Measuring blunder forces long delay in first T20
Match between Australia and West Indies delayed after officials noticed the inner fielding circle was too big
Laura Jolly at Kensington Oval, Barbados
15 September 2019, 10:47 AM AEST
Play was delayed in bizarre circumstances during Australia’s T20 against the West Indies in Barbados when officials were made aware that the dimensions of the playing surface were incorrect.
After Australia spearhead Megan Schutt bowled Windies opener Britney Cooper for a duck with the fourth delivery of the match, the umpires came together and signalled for assistance from the stands.
It soon became apparent that the umpires believed the white markers that provide the boundary for the inner fielding circle were too far from the pitch, so the third official and the venue’s curator – carrying a measuring tape - were summoned onto the field.
Sure enough, the first marker they inspected at backward square leg was deemed to be too far from the pitch, and a five-minute delay followed while the remaining markers were checked and brought in, much to the bemusement of the waiting players.
The inner circle in women’s T20Is must have a radius of 23m (25.15 yards), as opposed to men’s matches where the distance is 27.43m (30 yards).
During the re-measuring process, umpire Verdayne Smith was heard to say: "He measured 30 to start, and I told him it was 25".
Speaking after the match, Australia captain Meg Lanning said allrounder Jess Jonassen first suspected that the markers were too far away from the pitch.
"The inner circle was a little too deep on one side" Lanning said.
"JJ (Jonassen) was at point and she came up to me and said she felt like she was really deep.
"So I asked the umpire and when we had a look it was a couple metres too deep, it was the men's circle but once we got that fixed it was all right."
When play resumed, a second head-scratching moment came just two balls later.
Australia believed they had Kyshona Knight run out after an ill-judged quick single, with Jess Jonassen’s accurate throw from point enabling keeper Alyssa Healy to whip the bails off with the opener visibly short of her crease.
But the Australians were then left puzzled when square leg umpire Jonathan Blades failed to react.
As the official approached the stumps to replace the bails, Australia allrounder Ashleigh Gardner asked if there had been a run out, at which point he gestured towards his ears to indicate he had not heard an appeal.
After a quick 'howzat' from the tourists, he responded by raising his finger, with Knight forced to depart for one as the Windies slumped to 2-1 after one prolonged over.
"She was out, but the umpire thought we hadn't appealed so he hadn't given her out yet," Lanning said.
"We thought we had, we thought she was so far out we didn’t need a massive appeal, we just appealed a little bit, but we definitely did and once we sorted that out we could all move on."
The umpiring was in focus again at the end of the 10th over when Sheneta Grimmond survived an attempted stumping from Healy off the bowling of Jonassen, with replays showing the batter’s foot was clearly in the air when Healy removed the bails. But with no TV umpire available for this match, Grimmond was able to continue her innings.
Australia are playing three T20Is in Barbados as they ramp up their preparations for the T20 World Cup on home soil next February and March.
Fans in Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea can stream the series live and free on cricket.com.au and the CA Live App, while fans elsewhere can watch on the West Indies Cricket YouTube channel.
CommBank Tour of the West Indies
Australia squad: Meg Lanning (c), Rachael Haynes (vc), Erin Burns, Nicola Carey, Ashleigh Gardner, Heather Graham, Alyssa Healy, Jess Jonassen, Delissa Kimmince, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Tayla Vlaeminck, Georgia Wareham
West Indies ODI squad: Stafanie Taylor (c), Hayley Matthews (vc), Reniece Boyce, Afy Fletcher, Chinelle Henry, Shamilia Connell, Stacy Ann King, Natasha McLean, Kycia Knight, Kyshona Knight, Anisa Mohammed, Karishma Ramharack, Shabika Gajnabi
One-Day Internationals* *ICC Women's Championship matches
First ODI: Australia won by 178 runs
Second ODI: Australia won by 151 runs
Third ODI: Australia won by eight wickets
September 14: First T20I, Kensington Oval, Barbados
September 16: Second T20I, Kensington Oval, Barbados
September 18: Third T20I, Kensington Oval, Barbados