Australian Test bowler Peter Siddle was treated for smoke inhalation following Saturday’s abandoned Big Bash match in Canberra.
- Peter Siddle says he feels no lingering effects after bowling in thick smoke haze in the Big Bash in Canberra
- Cricket Australia anticipates potential smoke haze in Sydney’s New Year’s Test, but says it ‘comes in quick but also goes quick’
- CA says smoke delays could be treated in the same way as rain delays
Siddle sent down two overs before play stopped in the abandoned BBL match between the Sydney Thunder and Adelaide Strikers, just four balls short of the five overs required to lodge a result.
Smoke quickly engulfed Manuka Oval, dramatically reducing visibility and air quality.
Veteran quick Siddle was later treated for smoke inhalation, but has since joined Australia’s squad as cover for the injured Josh Hazlewood for the Boxing Day Test against New Zealand.
He said he felt no lingering effects from the smoke.
“If you sit next to a campfire, just imagine that, that’s what it felt like out on the field,” Siddle said.
“I’m feeling all right. It’s obviously disappointing not to be able to finish the game, but at the end of the day player welfare is the main thing, and there’s bigger issues going on than worrying about a cricket game.”
SCG Test could be affected by bushfire smoke
It comes as Cricket Australia (CA) prepares for smoke from bushfires to have an impact on play during Sydney’s New Year’s Test between Australia and New Zealand.
Visibility was greatly reduced during the Canberra Big Bash match, forcing its abandonment. (AAP: Lukas Coch)
Reduced visibility on the field, caused by smoke from the bushfires currently ravaging parts of NSW, is the primary issue that could put players and umpires at risk of injury during the January 3-7 match.
Spectators could also face health risks.
But if smoke did interrupt the match, CA head of operations Peter Roach said ICC regulations would allow officials to work around the issue, effectively treating it like a rain delay.
“It’s a growing issue that we’re seeing around the country, certainly Sydney and Canberra mainly,” Roach said.
“Like rain, the rules are in place to add time, to suspend play.
“But what we’re finding is it comes in quick but also goes quick.
“It’s unlikely, we believe, it’ll be there for a full day. We might see some challenges across that day, but we’ll play it like rain or adverse weather. Time can be added on.”
Thick smoke haze was seen during a Sheffield Shield match at the SCG earlier in December between NSW and Queensland. (AAP: Craig Golding)
Roach approved of the Big Bash match officials’ decision to call off the Thunder v Strikers clash in Canberra.
“We’ve got a lot of data from the weather bureaus to say when things get dangerous, but what we’re seeing is the visibility seems to be the most obvious thing,” Roach said.
“I think we have concern when the smoke’s around, definitely, because it is a challenge on those two metrics.”