The first Twenty-20 International (T20I) of the three-match series between the West Indies women saw the match being stopped midway during the play due to incorrect measurement of the ground in Barbados on Saturday.
Bowling first, the Australian women got off to a great start as Megan Schutt sent a West Indies opener packing for a duck. However, after only the fourth ball of the first over, the umpires stopped the play after they were aware that the dimensions of the inner field were not correct.
The umpires called for out-field assistance as the venue curator was summoned to the ground with a measuring tape. They first measured the length of the backward square-leg from the pitch and it was estimated to be too far. Another five minutes delay was followed after the officials measured the other part of the inner circle.
It was later found that the radius of the inner circle from the pitch was 30 yards which is the length for men’s cricket. According to the ICC rule, the radius of the inner circle for women’s cricket should not be more than 25 yards. Following the measurement, the length was corrected in the middle of the play much to the bewilderment of the waiting players on the ground.
While the officials were measuring the ground, on-field umpire Verdayne Smith was heard saying, “He measured 30 to start, and I told him it was 25.”. However, Australian captain Meg Lanning said that it was her teammate Jess Jonassen, who was fielding at point, suspected the mistake first and the officials were informed accordingly.
The Southern Stars continued their unbeaten run on their tour of West Indies as they won the first T20I comfortably. Megan Shutt starred with the ball to return with a figure of 3/31 as the West Indies women were kept within a paltry total of 106/8 in 20 overs. Earlier, Australia Women had also won the ODI series 3-0 as they whitewashed the home team.