Lancashire v Yorkshire, Old Trafford, 4th day September 3, 2014

'Devastated' Gale misses final weeks after ban


On the day when Yorkshire's chances of winning the County Championship moved from the realm of the possible to that of the very probable, captain Andrew Gale has received a two-match ban for his part in an altercation with the Lancashire batsman Ashwell Prince, on the third evening of the Roses match at Old Trafford, which means he will miss the rest of the season.

Gale was aggrieved that Prince was delaying the game at a time when Yorkshire were pressing for a victory and trying to bowl as many overs as possible. He apparently swore at Prince and was reported by the umpires Steve O'Shaughnessy and Steve Garratt.

On the final morning of the game Gale apologised to the Lancashire captain Glen Chapple, who confirmed that while his opposite number had "crossed the line", the game itself, which Yorkshire won by an innings, had "finished on good terms".

By then, however, the wheels of justice had begun to grind extremely quickly and an ECB statement was issued stating that Gale had received an automatic suspension having previously accrued six penalty points for an incident during the earlier Roses match of the season when he had shown dissent. Jason Gillespie, the Yorkshire coach, said Gale was "devastated".

Yorkshire have confirmed that they will not be appealing against the ban. However, Gillespie assessed the significance of the ban for both the club and Gale soon after the game had ended.

"He's our leader, the leader of Yorkshire County Cricket Club," he said. "For him to be missing the last two games is devastating for the man himself. We really feel for him and are disappointed. His season is over and he is quite understandably devastated after such a great win here."

The ECB statement said: "Gale was reported…for a Level Two breach of the directives: using language or gesture that is obscene or of a serious insulting nature to another player, umpire, referee, team official or spectator.

"Gale had previously received six penalty points following a Level Two breach in May 2014. The penalty for a subsequent breach at Level Two within 24 months is six penalty points. Gale has therefore received a total of twelve penalty points, triggering an automatic suspension. He will be suspended from all cricket under the jurisdiction of the ECB until and including Friday, September 27, 2014 - a period which covers Yorkshire's next two first XI fixtures."

On the playing front the suspension may avoid a ticklish selection dilemma for Yorkshire, who are expecting to have Tim Bresnan, Joe Root and Gary Ballance available for the game against Nottinghamshire. Gale dropped himself for the game against Middlesex earlier in the season and he may have fallen on his sword next week too. As it is, the ECB have done the grisly job for him.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Dave on September 4, 2014, 12:56 GMT

    Cricket is a competitive sport and you are bound to get instances like this. Cricket, thank God , has few incidents that warrant such discipline action. As a cricket fan who has attended lots of matches I have not seen time wasting by any team or player though I know it goes on. Yorkshire are a really good side and this was a fantastic win by them and credit needs to go to their Captain for how He managed his team and encouraged match winning performances by individual players. An apology has been given and been accepted by Lancashire. Lets look forward to the closing matches where I am sure Yorkshire will end as Champions.

    I am a Hampshire supporter and I am looking forward to seeing Yorkshire play in division 1 next season

  • Mark on September 4, 2014, 8:34 GMT

    The punishment fits the crime here and his previous misedemeanour is so recent he should have let a team mate challenge Prince when he was time wasting. The bigger issue is the inconsistency of treatment between internationals and county players. Anderson said similar in a Roses match a few years back and far worse in the series v India this summer. Clarke likewise made far worse comments and was not banned. And what punishment for bringing the game into disrepute do the players like Prince and Khawaja get for their deliberate attempts to go slow and limit the overs to be bowled? Should the umpires not similarly report them to the ECB for flagrant breach of the laws, ethics and spirit of the game? Mind you, its good to see that it was two proper Lancastrians in Prince and Khawaja causing all the fuss. This issue should not take away any credit to an outstanding and comprehensive victory for Yorkshire over the old enemy who must surely now be consigned to next season in div 2.

  • Neil on September 4, 2014, 8:14 GMT

    @Shubhankar Patil - Good grief man, you and the other Indian fans need to get over it. In that case and this due process was followed and a decision made.

  • Android on September 4, 2014, 5:02 GMT

    when Anderson does it it's all right he deserves it right. Cool cool.

  • Dummy4 on September 4, 2014, 4:51 GMT

    People have to realise that to Lancastrians and Yorkshiremen, a Roses match is not a life-and-death matter. It is far, far more important. As a Lancashire supporter, I feel the Yorkshire captain has been too harshly treated for a perfectly understandable and forgivable breach of etiquette given the context.

  • Andy on September 3, 2014, 23:38 GMT

    That'll be the same Glen Chapple, who said of the Anderson vs Gale/Sayers incident/s in 2011, "I don't think it was anything too dramatic but it got competitive."

  • Dummy4 on September 3, 2014, 20:41 GMT

    The usual ECB cover-up. What's really needed is urgent action against time wasting. Umpires should have the power to add on extra time when it occurs, just like football referees. A footballer wouldn't be allowed to spend 4 minutes taking a throw-in or goal kick, call for a drink or take ages tieing up a lace so why can cricketers waste time with impunity? It's time to outlaw it before all county grounds become even more deserted. Spectators are truly sick of these tactics but no one in authority seems to care. Having an umpire who previously played for one of the sides taking part also seems a bit too cosy for me.

  • Tony on September 3, 2014, 20:23 GMT

    Speaking as a Yorkshire supporter I have no sympathy with Gale. He has brought this on himself and deserves the punishment he has received.

  • John on September 3, 2014, 18:56 GMT

    I'm not by any stretch of the imagination alluding to any impropriety in a Roses Match,but surely all umpires in any County Game should and must have no affliliation to either county.Thus allowing a neutral opinion which is an unbiased response to unsavory behaviour by any of the teams on the field of play.

  • Mark on September 3, 2014, 17:27 GMT

    So Gale swears at an opponent, apologises and gets a 2 game ban. Anderson swears at an opponent, does not apologise but admits to swearing and he gets away scot free to play for England. And the Aussie skipper Clarke swears and makes physical threats to Anderson and also gets away with any punishment.

    Looks like one set of rules for the internationals and another for the humble county player.

    Plus its also another example of the ECB finding new ways to deny Yorkshire having access to players - test call ups, Lions games, bans..... whats next in the ECB quest to deny us the title?

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