New Delhi: A day before the 3rd Test between India and Australia at Perth, members of the ground crew were seen partying with beer bottles on the WACA track. This is in violation to International Cricket Council's code of conduct pertaining to handling of pitches.
Close to 20 people including the curator were seen partying on the uncovered track hours before the scheduled start of play. Officials from Cricket Australia however told NDTV that celebrations before the start of a Test is a tradition. "Celebration before the Test at the WACA has been a tradition including drinking beers. The pitch will play fine on the match," assured an official.
Though the ground-staff was bare-feet, having the pitch uncovered and not enclosing it hours before play is in violation of ICC guidelines.
Curator Cameron Sutherland however said his team was working on the track. "We were working on the pitch. We had an issue when the Adelaide Strikers warming up on it on Sunday which they weren't supposed to. We were looking at the aesthetics of it," he said on Friday adding that the work was started late because of his commitments earlier.
Ironically, the official website of WACA clearly lists alcohol as a prohibited item inside the stadium and that it cannot be carried inside. Even open bottles containing any form of liquid is not allowed inside the premise. "Drink containers that have been previously opened (unsealed) are not permitted however empty personal drink containers and sealed plastic water or soft drink bottles are permitted."
The website declares WACA as a licensed venue which means alcohol will be sold/provided from authorised spots but warns that intoxicated people will be evicted. The section 'Liquor Licensing and Responsible Service of Alcohol' spells out other related policies of the stadium including stands where alcohol consumption is not allowed.