Reaction to match abandonment
Following today’s abandonment of our Specsavers County Championship match against Surrey, Somerset Chief Executive Andrew Cornish said: “There was a huge storm last night and the covers have lifted up slightly at one end.
“That caused the flat cover to move away. Water has got underneath and settled in an area which the umpires deemed has made the pitch unplayable.
“It’s really frustrating and not how we wanted out home season to finish. Over the last few weeks we have had some difficult days, so we were looking to build on some of the momentum that Azhar Ali and Tom Abell were giving us last night.
“It could have been a really exciting day’s play and the weather is beautiful here now, but there was only one conclusion that the umpires could come to and they took that decision early to let as many people as possible know.
“It’s frustrating for people who have come down from London and stayed overnight and those who have been down here for the duration. However, this is an act of God and there was nothing we could do.
“We had additional sandbags on the covers last night, we had secondary ties on the covers last night and nobody can remember anything like this happening before. It was a prolonged storm last night.
“The match officials have been in touch with the ECB and they understand the situation. That’s the matter closed.”
Somerset Head Coach, Jason Kerr said: “Inclement weather all through the evening created a very bizarre situation. Simon Lee, our Head Groundsman, turned up this morning and the covers had been disturbed and unfortunately quite a lot of water has got onto the surface of the wicket.
“Simon sent me the pictures this morning, so we turned up and had a look. We have to put the situation of the game to one side and deal with the facts and they are that the surface was not conducive to any play today, which is incredibly disappointing.
“The weather last night was atrocious, and I can’t recall anything like this during my career. I’ve seen it at out grounds where there is insufficient covering and the water has managed to get under the covers, but I’ve never seen it here in 20 years.”
Somerset Head Groundsman, Simon Lee outlined how the events unfolded on Friday morning. “I got into the ground at 6:30 this morning and my first thought was that everything looked ok when I came in my car,” he said. “I was expecting that some of the sheets might have been blown off, but they were all fine.
“Then, as I was walking into the shed, one of my colleagues shouted and it became obvious that some of the covers had blown off and were lying on top of each other about a metre or two away from where they should have been.
“I investigated and unfortunately the side of the square we are on has got a slight slope. Where they’d blown off, water had leaked from the sheets and the rain had leaked onto the run through and the bowler’s footmarks around the wicket.
“I rang Alex Wharf at 7am and let him know the situation and sent him a few pictures. The umpires arrived at 8.30am, had a look and then spoke to the two coaches and the captains to decide what they were going to do.
“Their first thought was that it was not going to be playable because it was so different to the conditions on the rest of the pitch. It also comes down to player welfare and things like that.”Back to News