Sungold Cup organisers hold firm on decision to withhold prizemoney from Noorat 

ORGANISERS of the inter-association Sungold Cup are standing firm on a decision not to award Noorat prizemoney earned in the 2012 Twenty20 tournament.

Robert Haberfield, one of three members of the cup organising committee, said the South West Cricket club had failed to prove it did not breach player eligibility rules.

Warrnambool Cheese and Butter, the company behind the tournament, will retain the $500 Noorat won for being a defeated quarter-finalist.

The issue came to light after Noorat clinched the South West Cricket Twenty20 tournament on January 5, which qualified it for the 2013 Sungold Cup.

Captain Warren Attrill told The Standard the club had yet to receive any prizemoney for its efforts at the lucrative tournament 12 months earlier.

Attrill said organisers had questioned the eligibility of Stephen Staunton, who had seemingly played three matches for the SWC season — one below Sungold Cup requirements. He said Staunton was on the team sheet for a washed out fourth match, which he believed would have qualified him.

But Haberfield said yesterday Noorat “have not clarified their position to our satisfaction”.

“Last season of the Sungold Twenty20 there were some queries about the eligibility of a player from the Noorat Cricket Club,” he said.

“We being the tournament organisers, we asked the Noorat Cricket Club for clarification about the qualification of the player concerned.

“We made it clear until we were satisfied about the qualification we would instruct there wouldn’t be any prizemoney paid out to Noorat.”

The 2013 Sungold Cup is on January 27 and 28. Organisers have devised a draw but are waiting on one qualifier, from the Portland and District Cricket Association.

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