“HOWZAP!” is probably the best word to summarise an amazing end to a Colac district cricket match on Saturday when a lightning strike knocked players to the ground.
They immediately abandoned the division three game and bolted to the safety of the clubroom and cars. The score book merely has a notation “abandoned due to weather”, but for players and spectators it was an electrifying moment they’ll remember for the rest of their lives.
“It was pretty intense,” Tomahawk Creek captain Shaun Oborne told The Standard yesterday.
“Pretty well everyone on the ground dropped and had pain in their feet.
“After a silence we yelled ‘get off the ground’ and everyone just ran.
“Back in the sheds everyone was in shock.”
It is believed a bolt of lightning struck a farm paddock close to the Irrewillipe cricket ground.
Mr Oborne said one player near the boundary saw it split into three or four forks.
The incident happened about 5.45pm as Alvie players Ryan Watson and Tom Burnett were batting and Tomahawk Creek’s Ben Rowe had the ball in his hand about to start a new over.
Alvie needed 32 runs off seven overs to win for a chance at making the finals next month.
“A thunderstorm was getting closer and we had been thinking of abandoning the game anyway,” Mr Oborne said.
“After the lightning struck parents rushed their kids into cars and headed back to town, fearing for their lives.
“While we were sitting in the sheds having a quiet drink while we were packing up we heard fire trucks going past.”
Fortunately the storm didn’t hit last weekend when hundreds of people were at the ground for a B and S ball.