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Tuesday, 26 June, 2001, 23:54 GMT 00:54 UK
Cricket crowd trouble summit
A Pakistan cricket fan is led away following a pitch invasion at the end of the Natwest series final
How can cricket stop scenes like this?
Government ministers are to meet England and Wales Cricket Board officials on Wednesday to discuss measures to control crowd disorder at cricket matches.

The discussions come after several incidents blighted the Natwest Series games between England, Pakistan and Australia.

In one incident, a steward at Headingley suffered broken ribs when hundreds of supporters invaded the pitch during an England versus Pakistan match.

Sports Minister Richard Caborn and Home Office Minister John Denham will lead the Government team to discuss the possibility of extending existing legislation to cover cricket.

Lord John Bassam told the House of Lords on Tuesday: "The government will assist the cricketing authorities in identifying what needs to be done to minimise the potential for further crowd problems."

Options include the widening of the Football Offences Act of 1991, which largely eradicated similar instances at football, to include cricket.


Any serious crowd disturbance and public disorder is clearly a matter of national importance and concern
Lord Bassam

Lord Bassam described a proposal to extend fixed-penalty fines for throwing fireworks on public highways to include cricket grounds as "eminently sensible."

The meeting will discuss a wide range of crowd management issues at cricket matches ranging from entry controls and ticketing to steward training and post match celebration controls.

Lord Bassam suggested that cricketing authorities will need to study these areas and not rely on government legislation alone to solve the problem.

The minister added: "Any serious crowd disturbance and public disorder is clearly a matter of national importance and concern, particularly when it takes place at a cricket match which is widely viewed."

Crowd graphic

Players protest

Matches affected

Official response

Containing crowds

Agnew's view

AUDIO/VIDEO

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