Cricket match ends in brawl

By Justin Flynn

The Bellarine Peninsula Cricket Association (BPCA) has launched an investigation after a wild brawl resulted in a player being hospitalised and a match between Queenscliff and Portarlington being abandoned.

The game between the top two sides in the D Grade competition was called off nearly halfway through Queenscliff’s innings after Portarlington batted first.

Queenscliff opening batsman Michael Farrell, who also captained the club to an A Grade premiership in 2013, was taken to hospital after an on-field altercation.

Police were called to Portarlington Recreation Reserve, but no charges were laid.

The game was reportedly played with much tension, which boiled over after a verbal confrontation between Farrell and Portarlington opening bowler Brock Williamson.

One witness, who wished to remain anonymous, said Farrell made contact to a player with his bat.

The witness said Farrell was then set upon by some Portarlington players.

The witness said Farrell was put in a headlock and repeatedly struck in the head.

According to the witness, Williamson was not involved in the brawl.

Farrell was treated for concussion on Saturday night.

BPCA president Ian Caldwell has removed himself from overseeing the investigation due his long-term ties with Portarlington Cricket Club.

The association’s senior vice-president Denis Bilston will head the investigation.

After the brawl, both sides simmered down and agreed to abandon the match and declare the result a draw, however the Independent understands it is unlikely either side will be given any points and the match will be declared a ‘no result’.

The BPCA is considering heavily fining both clubs and potentially kicking them out of the D Grade finals series.

The association will also consider other sanctions that will be determined by the investigation and subsequent tribunal.