Cricket Brawl

Dave and I have been pondering the possibility of brawls breaking out at cricket matches, and knowing that some Inkstain readers come from cricket-enabled nations, I thought I’d throw the question out here. (Plus, I thought it’d be pretty cool to come in the top 10 Google searches for “cricket brawl.”) Do they head butt at cricket matches? Any history of bench-clearing brawls?


  1. In 1st class cricket (International and main domestic competitions) and some lower order cricket, the batting side are inside a pavillion, often up some steps and watching from a balcony. By the time they got the middle, the brawl would be over. The two batsmen, though well armed and well protected would be a tad out-numbered.

    Local cricket would be a different matter, but it’s still quite a long way to the middle, and youyr average local cricketer tends not to be the sort who would go charging off over that distance unless they thought there was something in it for them (the glory of a catch, say).

    My experience has only included, a few toe to toe verbal confrontations, and the only incidents I’m aware of of actual physical blows was Pakistan’s captain hitting a spectatoir who called him a fat potato, and a batsmen who hit a streaker.

    I’m sure others will be able to recall the odd brawl in club cricket, but I think it’s rare. After all, it’s just not cricket, old boy.

  2. In 30 years as a ‘cricket enabled villager’ I’ve never seen worse that sharp words. Our kind of cricket tends to be more fun than fight, this applies to most all levels of it I’d say.

    Difficult to say what’s actually going on wrt the current kerfful (spp). Cheating is difficult to prove (and imo in the current case most probably isn’t proven), but going of in a huff and not being preparred to accept verdict of umpire is simply not cricket.

  3. “Our kind of cricket tends to be more fun than fight, this applies to most all levels of it I’d say.”

    Yes I forgot to mention that bit.

    On the current falling out:

    I think the ICC rule giving the blanket ability to the umpire based on ball condition needs revisiting.

    I think Hair’s handling could have been better.

    I think the Pakistan team mishandled their protest.

    All three share part of the blame really. And that’s ignoring any questions about ball tampering.

  4. but in baseball the batting team is also sequestered in their dugout (and the relief pitchers even further away in the bullpen). are you saying that in cricket the batting team is much further from the field of action than the batting team is in baseball? so maybe there’s a threshold of distance that contributes to the fighting/no-fighting difference between baseball and cricket? Or that the American, Latino and Japanese players are much more hot-headed than the Commonwealth nations’ players?

  5. In cricket the wicket area is (effectively, it can vary a bit) in the middle of the whole cricket pitch. In the image linked below it’s where those white squares are (they’re covering the wicket to protect it from the rain) that the game is played. The batting team are in the red-roofed building bottom left (I think, I’ve never been to the Oval). I picked this ground as this is where the recent spat took place.

    See also

    The batting team are upstairs in the building in the middle left of the image (about ten o’clock).

    Plus it rarely gets to the point where anyone would want to rush onto the pitch. Except maybe the odd crowd invasion, and even they’re rare. Not sure about on the sub-continent, but again I think rare.

    Here’s the sort of ground that me (and I should imagine, Peter H) would be more used to:

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