30 Nov 2014

Cricket umpire killed by ball

1:26 pm on 30 November 2014

An umpire standing in an Israeli league cricket match has been killed after being struck by a ball.

Hillel Oscar, 58, died of a catastrophic head wound inflicted in a match played in the Mediterranean coastal town of Ashkelon yesterday.

Standing at the bowler's end, the umpire was hit when the ball ricocheted off the stumps and hit him in the neck from a shot that came straight back down the pitch, the BBC reported.

The players attempted to revive Mr Oscar after he fell to the ground and the ambulance crew that arrived soon afterwards worked for an hour at the scene before he was taken to hospital in the city of Ashdod and subsequently declared dead.

Police said there were no suspicion of foul play but Sports Minister Limor Livnat had called for an inquiry.

Mr Oscar's wife, Jenny, says the incident occurred moments after a minute's silence for Australia batsman Phillip Hughes, who died in hospital on Thursday after being struck by a ball during a domestic first-class match in Sydney.

Cricket was not a professional sport in Israel but Ashdod is one of the main centres, where a large number of Jewish immigrants from India live.

The fixture between Young Ashdod and Lions Lod was being played on the last day of the season.

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