Unruly scenes were witnessed in the stadium during the second Twenty20 cricket match between India and South Africa in Cuttack on Monday.
Unhappy with India’s dismal batting performance of 92 all out, angry spectators hurled water bottles into the Barabati stadium. Trouble began in stands 3 and 4, known for its notorious fans, but spread to other stands as well late in the South Africa chase.
After play was halted once for several minutes, a third incident forced the players to go off the field. The ICC match referee Chris Broad was engaged in discussions with the umpires and other officials as they assessed player safety. Announcements were made on the public address system, warning the crowd that the venue could be banned from hosting international matches if the spectators did not behave.
Play eventually resumed after security forces had evicted the crowd from the stands from where the projectiles were thrown before South Africa, chasing 93 for victory, reached 96/4 in 17.2 overs.
The crowd behaviour evoked images of the 1996 World Cup semifinal being abandoned at the Eden Gardens due to a similar incident.