Australia shaken after rock thrown at team bus in India
MELBOURNE (Reuters) – The Australia cricket team suffered a scare following their Twenty20 international win over India in Guwahati on Tuesday after a rock was thrown at their team bus, shattering one of the windows, governing body Cricket Australia (CA) said.
Players and staff were travelling from Barsapara Stadium back to their team hotel in the eastern city when the rock pierced the window on the right-hand side of the bus, CA said on its website (cricket.com.au).
The board said the rock was “believed to be roughly the size of a cricket ball” and had ended up inside the bus.
“In a remarkable piece of good fortune, no one was sitting on the seat next to the window when it was broken,” CA’s report said. “While no one was injured, the Australian players were understandably shaken up by the incident.”
Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal said the incident had damaged the state’s reputation as a reliable host for major sporting events and that state police had identified two suspects.
“Really unfortunate incident after a great game aimed to tarnish Guwahati’s reputation as an emerging sports hub. We strongly condemn it,” Sonowal said on his official Twitter account.
”Investigation is on full swing & Police have already picked up 2 suspects.
“Whoever got indulged in the hooliganism did it with the sole objective of defaming Assam & derailing its journey towards the top… the culprits will face the full force of the law & given exemplary punishment.”
India’s sports minister Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore said the incident was not reflective of the security measures.
“Have spoken to Sarbananda Sonowalji about the Guwahati incident. Personal security of visiting athletes & teams is extremely important for us,” Rathore said on his official Twitter account.
Australia’s team bus was also struck by a rock in Bangladesh five weeks ago as it travelled back to a hotel following the first day’s play of the second and final test against the home side in Chittagong.
That prompted authorities to tighten security around the Australia team.
Australia opening batsman Aaron Finch posted a photo of a shattered window on a bus on Twitter.
“Pretty scary having a rock thrown through the team bus window on the way back to the hotel!!” he tweeted.
Australia are scheduled to play India in the third and final Twenty20 of the series in Hyderabad on Friday.