L&MCC V Birstwith Decision 8/9/15
Peter, Isabel and I reviewed my provisional decision having heard from Sue Armitage and Johnny Millward of BCC and from Ben Challis and Eugene Downey of L&MCC.
The main issue was whether we could hold BCC unreasonable for not accepting the opinion of ED, the L&MCC groundsman that the ground was unfit when there had been no agreement between the 2 captains.
BC admitted that L&MCC had breached Rule 25 by not turning up for the start of the match. He had told JM that this would happen even though he and JM had not agreed that the match should be cancelled.
BCC`s main point was that BCC could not be held to have been unreasonable when they had simply followed the provisions of Rule 25. The Rule is clear. If no agreement both teams must turn up.
We could find no reason for finding that BCC had acted unreasonably. Although most captains would have accepted the opinion of an experienced groundsman there is no obligation to do so. It should also be recognised that JM told BC that BCC were going to be at the ground at the required time.
In conclusion there are no grounds for holding that JM or BCC acted unreasonably. Rule 25 must be followed. This means that L&MCC conceded the match. BCC therefore are awarded 6 points and L&MCC none.
The fact that no match in Division 2 was completed is irrelevant. This match too would not have been completed but this cannot prevent Rule 25 from being applied.
(Anton Lodge Disciplinary Panel Chair)
The Disciplinary Panel has recently had to consider how Rule 21 (as it affects Divisions Three – Nine) may be interpreted.
It was clear from the case in question that Rule 21 could genuinely be interpreted in different ways
and this might cause further confusion during the remainder of the season.
The confusion arises as to the number of overs to be bowled in the final hour of play in a match
delayed or interrupted by weather when the final hour commences at 6.40pm
In order to clarify the position and following a decision by the Disciplinary Appeal Panel, the League
Management Committee issues the following guidance to clubs with regard to how Rule 21 will be
interpreted for the remainder of the 2015 season.
1. If 20 overs have not been bowled between 6.40pm and 7.40pm, then, conditions
permitting, the match continues until 20 overs have been bowled.
2. In the event that 20 overs are bowled after 6.40pm but before 7.40pm, then further overs may be bowled until 7.40pm is reached.