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Ponting furious at security breach

cricket Updated: Feb 02, 2010 20:12 IST

IANS
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Australian captain Ricky Ponting said he would have led a walk-off had any of his players been tackled by a gatecrashing fan, the way it happened with Pakistan's Khalid Latif, at Perth.

Latif was fielding at deep square leg in the fifth and last One-Day International Sunday, motioning to a teammate and walking forward as the spectator ran at him from behind. A security guard was ambling behind, too slow to keep up. The spectator rugby-tackled Latif, twisting and throwing him to the ground.

Latif complained of a stiff neck after the match finished.

Ponting claimed Latif was fortunate to avoid the kind of serious injury received by Terry Alderman in his infamous collision with a drunken fan at the Perth venue in 1982 and called for the culprit to face legal action.

"Let the police deal with it," Ponting was quoted as saying in The Age. "Hopefully it's in their hands. I just hope I never see that again, to tell the truth. I've seen that once a long time ago (with Alderman) and the thing we're talking about ended up being a horrible incident. It's a worry."

"We don't condone that sort of behaviour and unfortunately it's just a small minority of the crowd who turn up and do something stupid like that, which puts everybody in the same boat. We'd like to think that doesn't happen in Australia again," he said.

"If I was the fielding captain, I would have definitely pulled all the players in and had a chat to them about how they felt about it," he said.

"That wasn't the first spectator who had been on the ground, either. Luckily for me and luckily for us, we were the batting team at the time."

Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam denied Shahid Afridi should have taken his team off the field. "No, no, I don't think so. That wouldn't have been a nice gesture. Whatever the police want to do, they can do."

Ponting called for an example to be made of the goon to prevent a repeat. Police charged the man Sunday night.

"Make a good example of him and just make it clear to everyone who turns up at the cricket that sort of behaviour is unacceptable," Ponting said.

Last Friday night, also at the WACA Ground, a streaker got halfway to the pitch before he was stopped.