New Delhi: The International Cricket Council announced its men’s and women’s players of the month for August Monday, but there was a surprise inclusion among the winners — a dog that had invaded the pitch during a women’s domestic T20 match in Ireland.
— ICC (@ICC) September 13, 2021
The Ireland women’s national team handle Saturday had tweeted a video of Dazzle the dog invading the pitch during the rain-curtailed Women’s All-Ireland T20 Cup semi-final, contested between Bready and the Civil Service North of Ireland (CSNI), which Bready won by 11 runs via the DLS method.
“Great fielding…by a small furry pitch invader!” the account quipped, as the dog raced onto the field during CSNI’s batting innings, fetched the ball after an overthrow from a run-out chance, and handed it over to the non-striker.
— Ireland Women’s Cricket (@IrishWomensCric) September 11, 2021
The ICC agreed with the Ireland women’s team handle, tweeting that the dog showed “exceptional athleticism in the field”.
The media was also rife with puns in response to the pitch invasion, with The Guardian labelling the dog ‘Spaniel Vettori’, after the former New Zealand bowling all-rounder, while The Indian Express said the dog was the “best pitch invader ever”.
Fans’ return to venues brings pitch invasions
The return of fans to sporting venues in some parts of the world following the relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions has also led to the return of bizarre pitch invaders.
In cricket, the most prominent recent case has been of English prankster Daniel Jarvis, or “Jarvo”, who evaded stadium security authorities to invade the pitch in three consecutive England-India matches, pretending to be an Indian player.
Jarvis’ first pitch invasion was largely regarded as an amusing surprise by the match commentators, as well as some of the players in both teams, who were seen laughing as he was led away by the stadium authorities.
However, the next two incidents got a colder reception, as he was handed lifetime stadium bans and arrested on suspicion of assault after the fourth Test at The Oval in London.
Many social media users reacted to Dazzle the dog’s pitch invasion by comparing it to Jarvo’s invasions.
Jarvo wearing dog costume 😣 https://t.co/vhDjgrIMQm
— Mthn (@Being_Humor) September 11, 2021
Cricket world to Jarvo: pic.twitter.com/66UngGQ2QP
— Rohan Bindal (@rohan_bindal) September 12, 2021
Stop this nonsense jarvo 69.
— Prayag (@theprayagtiwari) September 11, 2021
(Edited by Shreyas Sharma)