Dorchester’s Ashley Vickers sees red over pitch invader


Dorchester Town’s Ashley Vickers was sent off for tackling a pitch invader dressed in a mankini in his side’s 3-1 defeat at Havant & Waterlooville.

The incident occurred with Monday’s game at 1-1. Dorchester ended the game with eight men after Jake Smeeton and Kyle Critchell were also dismissed.
Vickers, 39, told the Dorset Echo: “I’m dumbfounded and speechless. I thought I was doing them a favour.
“The ref lost the game after that and he knew he had made a great error.”
Player-manager Vickers had been forced to play in the Blue Square Bet South clash because his squad are missing many senior players with injury, including midfielders James Coutts and Jamie Gleeson.

It beggars belief. Their players told the ref not to send me off and their chairman even offered to take a player off to even things up,” said the Magpies boss.
“In hindsight I perhaps shouldn’t have done it but hindsight is a wonderful thing. I’m sure people will crucify me for this but I have broad shoulders.”
The Havant & Waterlooville fan, who has been identified as Alan Young, admitted he ran onto the pitch for a bet and the club have since been charged with supporter misconduct by the Football Association.
Young told BBC Radio Solent: “It was only a bit of a joke, we all agreed at my local pub on Sunday I’d do it as a bet.
“The security there were too slow but Vickers caught me quite well. He should be a rugby player.
“He hit me quite hard so by the time I had got up I didn’t know where I was on the pitch because I hadn’t expected the tackle.
“The security did ask me afterwards if I was OK but to be honest I enjoyed myself so much I didn’t really care what happened at the time.”

Havant boss Shaun Gayle told BBC Radio Solent: “The person I feel sorry for is Ashley Vickers, all he tried to do was deal with it and the referee has sent him off.
“If he had just grabbed him and held onto the lad then the ref might not have sent him off. He [Vickers] was obviously wound up with the situation, his side had just conceded a goal.
“That’s the thing that goes against him a little bit, but that’s up to the powers that be and of course we’ll do everything we can to help him.”
This is not the first time a sportsman has clashed with a pitch invader. A similar incident happened during cricket’s 1982-83 Ashes series in Perth when Australian pace bowler Terry Alderman captured an England fan who had run onto the pitch and slapped him.
Alderman dislocated his shoulder as a result and was consequently sidelined for 18 months.

Australian all-rounder Andrew Symonds escaped punishment in 2008 after he had tackled a nude streaker during an international match against India.
The International Cricket Council decided Symonds had not breached section 4.2 of the players’ code of conduct relating to physical assault on a player, official or spectator.
It is yet to be confirmed whether or not Dorchester will appeal against Vickers’ ban.

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