T20I interrupted due to wrong inner circle dimensions
Australia won the series opener by six wickets (Credit: Cricket West Indies)

The series opening first T20I between West Indies women and Australia women was interrupted four balls into the match due to a bizarre reason – incorrect measurements.

Yup, that’s right.

Megan Schutt had just cleaned up West Indies opener Birtney Cooper for a duck with her fourth delivery when the umpires stopped play and called up another official alongside the venue’s curator, reports cricket.com.au. They were concerned about the white markers used to define the inner circle which they would later find out were kept too far away from the pitch than what is stipulated as per official playing conditions.

As per the rule, for women’s T20Is, the inner circle should have a radius of 23m and 27.43m for men’s.

To make sure other measurements were as per the official standards, measuring tape was brought in to check the other markers, causing a further delay of five minutes.

“The inner circle was a little too deep on one side. JJ (Jonassen) was at point and she came up to me and said she felt like she was really deep. So I asked the umpire and when we had a look it was a couple metres too deep, it was the men’s circle but once we got that fixed it was all right,” Australia captain Meg Lanning was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au after the match.

This wasn’t the only instance of match officials becoming the centre of attention.

West Indies batter Kyshona Knight was run-out at the striker’s end but the umpire at the square leg region Jonathan Blades was unmoved. After being enquired if there was a run-out, the umpire simply pointed to his ear suggesting he hadn’t heard any appeal and hence no reaction.

Well, the Australians promptly appealed and then Blades raised his finger. “She was out, but the umpire thought we hadn’t appealed so he hadn’t given her out yet,” Lanning said. “We thought we had, we thought she was so far out we didn’t need a massive appeal, we just appealed a little bit, but we definitely did and once we sorted that out we could all move.”

This wasn’t the end either.

During the 10th over of West Indies innings, Sheneta Grimmond was stumped by wicketkeeper Alyssa Healy off Jonassen. Replays should Grimmond’s foot was in the air when the bails were removed but she survived due to the unavailability of TV umpire for the match.

Australia went on to win the match by six wickets.