London, June 28 (Ajit Weekly News) A group of protesters from the Just Stop Oil activist group and sporting t-shirts of the same briefly interrupted the proceedings of the second Ashes Test between England and Australia at Lord’s on Wednesday.
Ahead of the second over of the match, protestors raced towards the pitch and tried to spray orange powder paint. While captain Ben Stokes stopped one protestor and a steward took care of another protestor, England wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow sprung into action by lifting and carrying one protestor off the field, all by himself.
The ground staff then arrived to sweep and remove the orange powder paint which had spilled on the outfield. Bairstow, meanwhile, ran to the dressing room to change his white shirt and wicketkeeping gloves, which was made dirty by orange powder paint. In all, play was delayed for nearly six minutes before action resumed.
“Cricket is an important part of our national heritage, but how can we enjoy England vs Australia when much of the cricketing world is becoming unfit for humans to live in? We can no longer afford to distract ourselves when the sports we play, the food we eat, and the culture we cherish is at risk.”
“It’s time for cricket lovers and all those who understand the severity of this situation, to get onto the streets and demand action from this illegitimate, criminal government. When our children ask us ‘what did we do’ to avert this crisis, we better have a good answer,” said a spokesperson from Just Stop Oil.
The Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) said the protestors who invaded the field have been arrested. “Following the earlier pitch incursion, three people have been arrested for aggravated trespassing and taken into police custody and it is now a Metropolitan Police matter.”
It is the second time in the recent few months that the England team have been interrupted by a Just Stop Oil protest. On day one of the one-off Test against Ireland at Lord’s, their team bus suffered a brief halt after leaving the hotel for Lord’s by the Just Stop Oil protestors for five minutes.
“MCC condemn in the strongest possible terms today’s pitch incursion and the behaviour of the protestors involved. Their actions not only endanger themselves and those who work at the ground, but they have consistently shown complete disregard for the people who pay to attend events, not just here at Lord’s but around the country at other sporting venues,” said Guy Lavender, MCC Chief Executive.
Fearing disruption, international matches in England have prepared an extra pitch in case the original one is caused damage by the Just Stop Oil protestors, who have caused interruptions in sports events in the country this year.
Previously, two members of the Just Stop Oil campaign had invaded the pitch of the Premiership Rugby final at Twickenham, spraying orange paint power, before being taken away by staff and players. A similar incident led by the climate change group had occurred during the World Snooker Championships in April.
–Ajit Weekly News
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