Fifth One-Day International

India v England, 2005-06

At Guwahati, April 9, 2006. Abandoned.

Crowd trouble which left two policemen in hospital marred a day on which no play was possible because of unseasonally heavy rain the preceding week. The problem was exacerbated by a chronically inadequate public-address system: had the spectators realised the outfield was too wet for play, even though no rain fell on the day, they might not have reacted with such ferocity when it was officially abandoned at 1.10 p.m. Bonfires were lit in the stands, metal fences ripped from their hinges, and plastic bottles and rubble thrown on to the outfield. The police responded with teargas, threw back some of the stones and bricks, and badly beat two spectators after dragging them from the crowd. P. K. Deb, the vice-president of the Assam Cricket Association, blamed the umpires for not allowing play to start, but the decision was made in consultation with the captains, Sehwag and Strauss (deputising for Dravid and Flintoff, who were rested). In truth, the ACA needed to get its own house in order.

© John Wisden & Co.