Macaw cricket animals birds
A macaw © Getty Images (file photo)

There are numerous instances of non-humans interrupting cricket matches. Something similar happened during a game between Hinckley Amateur Thirds and Hathern Old Seconds, at Swallows Green, Hinckley, Leicestershire on September 1. The match came to a halt after macaw descended on a Tom Flannery, a sexagenarian fielder, during the Hathern Old Seconds innings.

Their captain Tim Davis later told Leicester Mercury: “It was the first half and two of our players were out batting and the other team were fielding when we heard this loud squawking noise coming from the trees. We all looked around thinking, ‘What’s that?’

“This big macaw started flying round and round the ground really low before coming to rest on the shoulder of one of the Hinckley team, Tom Flannery, who looked a bit shocked. I don’t think he really appreciated it much, but what can you do? It just perched on his shoulder like he was Long John Silver or something.

“It stayed there for a good two to three minutes while it was coaxed off him and we got a good photo. Luckily we were about ready to have a little break for a drink.

“Someone from the side came onto the field and took the bird off his shoulder and presumably it found its way home again. We had to stop the game because this bird was big enough to take someone’s finger off. We carried on playing about five to 10 minutes later.”

Hinckley Chairman Phil York did not attend the match. However, he later informed that the macaw had subsequently been collected by its owners, who live not far from Swallows Green: “I’ve seen the photo and it was a massive bird. It was from a house near to the ground.

“Tom’s one our oldest players — aged 67 — and it seems to have just taken a shine to him. He doesn’t look much like a pirate — he has a bit of a beard but no eye-patch or wooden leg. He wasn’t hurt at all. I’m told the people who own the bird came round and collected it so that the match could continue.

“The parrot was all any of the players were talking about after the match, though.”