Dutch T20 Cup match ends in conflict

Netherlands ground

A violent incident in a Dutch T20 Cup match between Hoofdklasse side Hermes-DVS and Topklasse team Punjab in Schiedam on Friday evening led to the match being abandoned and the police being called.

The conflict between Hermes batsman Olivier Elenbaas and Punjab wicketkeeper Mohsin Bajwa arose some 11 overs into the Hermes innings, shortly after an appeal for a catch at the wicket had been turned down.

Words were exchanged between the players, after which matters escalated alarmingly. Elenbaas, who has been playing in the recent regional Pro Series, reportedly swore at the keeper, who reacted strongly.

Punjab captain Suleiman Tariq and the umpires quickly intervened, but both players were sent off under Law 42, on the basis that each had allegedly committed a Level 4 offence.

It is believed to be the first time that the umpires’ new power to send players from the field has been used in the Netherlands.

Hermes chairman Jaco van Giezen was full of praise for Tariq’s approach to the situation, and the police stated that by the time they arrived the matter had been dealt with and no further action was necessary.

Hermes, however, refused to return to the field, and the match was abandoned.

Competition director Bart Kroesen confirmed on Saturday that the umpires’ reports had been received, and the matter had been passed to match referee Rob Kemming and to the KNCB Board.

The incident took place during the final round of group matches in the T20 Cup, and could conceivably affect the last placings in the quarter-finals of the competition.

HBS Craeyenhout and Voorburg have already qualified from the Haaglanden group, along with VRA and ACC from the Amsterdam-Utrecht pool.

Bloemendaal and either VVV Amsterdam or Rood en Wit Haarlem will go through from the Amsterdam-Haarlem group, with Sparta 1888 undefeated and top of the Rijnmond group. Whether Punjab join them in the quarter-final draw may now depend on what the KNCB decides about Friday’s unsavoury incident.

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