Camera operators pulled from tower as high winds hammer test match at Basin Reserve video

NZN VIDEO

Wellington wind harasses Basin Reserve grounds crew on day one of first test between Black Caps and Bangladesh.

In Maori mythology, Tawhirimatea is the god of weather, and something made him very grumpy on Thursday.

Winds clocking in at the pace of a well-directed Colin de Grandhomme bouncer swept across the Basin Reserve, forcing camera operators to flee their tower of scaffolding at the southern end of the ground during the second session

Umpires Marais Erasmus and Paul Reiffel were constantly raising their arms, not to give men out but to hold their hats firmly to their heads, while the heavy bails weren't heavy enough, coming off during almost every over.

Henry Nicholls and Trent Boult run after umpire Marais Erasmus' hat after wind blew it away.
GETTY IMAGES

Henry Nicholls and Trent Boult run after umpire Marais Erasmus' hat after wind blew it away.

When the bails weren't flying, a pitch invader tried to steal the stumps, only for Bangladeshi opener Tamim Iqbal to remove the stray plastic bag which had wrapped itself around the wickets.

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Umpire Marais Erasmus holds onto his hat much to the amusement of Neil Wagner.
GETTY IMAGES

Umpire Marais Erasmus holds onto his hat much to the amusement of Neil Wagner.

Welcome to a day of torturous test cricket in Wellington.

Earlier in the morning, a billboard had been torn from the side of a building in Wellington's city centre, throwing a row of lights 15 storeys onto a fire truck below.

As such, questions from non-cricketing types started coming into the inbox, asking if the game could be abandoned due to the winds.

Basin Reserve ground staff had to battle the wind as they put covers on the pitch during a period of rain.
PHOTOSPORT

Basin Reserve ground staff had to battle the wind as they put covers on the pitch during a period of rain.

Never in test cricket had players been pulled from the field due to high winds, and it wasn't about to happen now.

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Light drizzle, sure. Games have also been called early due to poor pitches or outfields, protests from the players and political unrest.

One game, in 1975, was even hit by a snow delay.

As Cricinfo reported, Lancashire scored 477-5 declared on the opening day of their three-day game in June, 1975, before reducing Derbyshire to 25-2 at the close of play.

When they returned for the second day, in the height of the English summer, it began to snow and the entire second day was written off. The players returned on day three and Derbyshire were all out for scores of 42 and 87 as the uncovered wicket was heavily impacted by the previous day's snowfall.

Thursday's wind brought back memories of the March, 2010, test between New Zealand and Australia at the Basin Reserve, in which similar strength gusts struck the ground.

A groundsman was injured during that match after the covers were blown like a spinnaker, sending him flying.

Cameramen on top of the scaffolding at the southern end were harnessed in because of those winds, made to brave the elements on that occasion.

The Decision Review System also proved unreliable because of the wind during that match, with the cameras shaking so much an accurate predicted path couldn't be computed.

With light rain halting the restart of the match, the DRS system at the southern end of the ground didn't get tested in the same fashion, although it may do if the wind keeps blowing for the second day on Friday.

 - Stuff

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