Somerset have been penalized for preparing a pitch - that was rated as poor - for the county championship decider against eventual champions Essex back in September. Somerset was charged for breach of regulation and it thus means that they will start the 2020 season with minus 12 points.
County Championship side Somerset have been charged by the Cricket Disciplinary Committee (CDC) for breach of regulation for preparing a pitch in Taunton which had excessive uneven bounce and due to which 24 points will be deducted over the next two seasons meaning that they will begin the 2020 season with minus 12 points.
"Somerset CCC's pitch preparation will continue to be monitored very closely. The club should expect any proven breach of ECB's pitch regulations in future to result in a points deduction," was the statement of warning given by the CDC in 2018 when Somerset had prepared a below-average rated pitch for a game against Lancashire which ended in two days. But they repeated their mistake and thus will now have to face the consequences that will be served by the CDC.
The final game of the season saw first play second as Essex took on Somerset in Taunton and they needed to force a result to win the championship. Having lost more than half of the match due to rain, Somerset took nine for 39 to dent Essex and increase their chances of an unlikely victory. But Essex held on to win the championship and became champions for the second time in three years.
Had Somerset won the title, ECB would have been in a tricky situation as they would then have had to decide whether the title should have been awarded to Essex due to the poor pitch offered and thus perhaps a possible dark day in county championship history was averted.