Brothers file protest to CRCA
By TONY WHITE
GRAFTON Services Brothers have written an official letter to the Clarence River Cricket Association (CRCA) asking the Association to review its decision to dock the club four competition points over the 'no covers' controversy.
Brothers and East Royal Tavern had four points deducted after round six (Dec 18) when the CRCA enforced a rule introduced this season that stipulates the team named first in the draw must ensure covers are placed on the pitch the evening before a match.
"We've written to the Association pointing out the pros and cons of the situation," Brothers captain Troy McLaren said. "We've asked them to review the matter, or I guess we are appealing, I'm not quite sure of the correct wording.
"We are not disputing the rule, but I must again point out not one minute of play was lost. We didn't lose any time. That's part of our argument.
"Hopefully this can be solved sensibly."
An investigation by The Daily Examiner has revealed other teams this season have failed to cover pitches on Fridays before matches, but have not been penalised.
When the story broke in The Daily Examiner on Wednesday, December 22, McLaren and Brothers treasurer Peter Ryan threatened to withdraw the club from the Bananacoast Community Credit Union Premier League if they lost points.
"That's still my feeling," McLaren said yesterday. "I think it's ridiculous, but it will be a team consensus.
"After we hear back from the Association we'll take a team vote.
"I can't speak for the others. If they are still happy to play okay. If not we still might withdraw.
"I haven't made up my mind yet, but at this stage I'm still leaning towards not playing.
"I might drop back to second grade. Maybe that might shake up a few people.
"We are still bitterly disappointed at the manner in which we found out what was happening - via The Daily Examiner.
"You've got to make a stand somewhere."
A spokesman for East Royal Tavern confirmed yesterday the club had accepted the CRCA's decision.