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April 17, 2009
Bermuda's fall from grace has intensified in the aftermath of their elimination from the World Cup Qualifiers in South Africa, with their fast bowler Kevin Hurdle earning a one-year ban from international cricket following a row with the team manager, Lionel Tannock, during their tour of the Caribbean earlier this year.
According to the Bermuda Cricket Board, Hurdle was caught smoking inside a pavilion by Tannock and, after being asked to go outside, fired a volley of obscenities in the manager's direction.
"Subsequent to the recent World Cup qualifiers tour and the reports from tour management; Kevin Hurdle was found guilty of using obscene, offensive and insulting language to a Team Official," a BCB statement said.
"The disciplinary committee levied a penalty of a one-year ban from international and domestic cricket. The sentence was appealed and the domestic ban was reduced to a three-game suspension. The one-year international ban was confirmed."
Hurdle will be 33 when the ban is lifted, and so the incident effectively ends a career which was already hanging by a thread after he failed to prove his fitness for the World Cup Qualifiers. In his absence, Bermuda crashed out of the competition in the first round after a shock defeat to Afghanistan, and so lost their coveted ODI status as a consequence.
The Hurdle episode adds further weight to the criticisms that Bermuda's manager, Gus Logie, levelled at his squad in a no-holds-barred interview with Cricinfo last week - comments which have since been reiterated by the man himself and backed up by Reggie Pearman, the board president.
"The government has put a lot of money [US$11m] into development of the sport on the island, and therefore they deserve to have some sort of success out of it," Logie told Cricinfo. "We have had professional people come in from all walks of life to come and work in Bermuda … but the general interest has been so low, that these guys aren't interested in coming back. No one seemed to really care that much."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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