Scorcher on pitch sparks temperature concerns
CRICKET: There were not many less enviable places than the centre of a cricket field over the weekend as hundreds of players in the Clarence Valley took to the middle when the mercury soared beyond 40 degrees.
But the oppressive conditions which had many players struggling to breathe on field have re-raised concerns over a lack of hot weather policy in the Clarence River Cricket Association handbook.
Coutts Crossing wicket keeper Richie Williamson was outspoken about the need for weather regulation and said it was something the association needed to consider in future.
"It was absolutely burning out there," he said. "Luckily we batted in the heat of the day but I went out and umpired and it was stifling, you just couldn't get any real cool air in your lungs.
"I think when it gets to that extreme heat, there needs to be some guidance in black and white in the rule book.
"The CRCA is in fantastic hands at the moment and I just think this is something that needs to be brought up at the next meeting."
As it stands umpires - or captains, when it comes to lower grades - are to use their discretion in terms of scheduled drinks and tea breaks to ensure players are not at risk in the heat.
CRCA president Tom Kroehnert said this way of operating was not likely to change unless it was brought up at the annual general meeting where club delegates could rule on the proposed motion.
"Until anything is written down in black and white, it is just very hard to put a limit on when we can and can't take the field," he said.
"I think it is definitely something worth discussing at an upcoming AGM."
Kroehnert admitted there were difficulties in creating a determined temperature limit - with the competition spreading across the valley, not all games in a round might be affected, causing some teams to miss out on potential ladder points.