Tuesday 3 July 2007 

Umpires Look For Protection From Unruly Fans

English umpires would like to see greater security at Twenty20 matches following crowd trouble and misbehaviour at some matches this season.

Problems have been exacerbated by rain hampering much of the ECB Twenty20 Cup programme and experienced umpire Peter Willey will raise the matter with the ECB.

Quoted in The Times, he said "This has happened because the weather has been so bad.

"In past years the sun has shone, but this season spectators have sat around drinking pints and perhaps the information they have been given over the Tannoy has not been as good as it should have been.

"There is adequate protection at the big grounds...(but) the outgrounds are a different matter because spectators can approach the players."

An emergency ECB meeting last week discussed crowd behaviour and they offered the following statement with regard to crowd behaviour:

(They aim to) "seek to eliminate unruly crowd behaviour which, whilst infrequent at cricket, is a matter which the ECB and the counties wish proactively to ensure does not creep into the game."