Cricket fans urged to take cover after arrow is fired into Oval

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A controlled evacuation is underway at the Oval cricket ground, police have said, after what appears to be a crossbow bolt was found on the pitch.

After an unusual incident at The Oval cricket ground during the county match between Surrey and Middlesex, the officials made a decision to suspend the play for the day on Thursday.

The arrow was sacked from outside of the ground which led to an announcement around the stadium saying: "On the advice of our security team - please take cover". Another spectator claimed officers told him they believed two arrows were fired into the grounds but police have yet to confirm this.

Officers and an armed response team from the Metropolitan Police arrived within 15 minutes and a full search of the ground was carried out by police and around 30 security staff.

"No arrests. We retain an open mind as to motive".

"The umpires took it out of the ground and got the players off as quickly as possible".

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Middlesex fan Jeremy Lawrence saw players being rushed off the pitch shortly after the arrow landed.

No one was injured and, according to a statement issued by the Metropolitan Police, it is believed the arrow was sacked from outside The Oval in Kennington, south London. It is the sort of thing that could easily have been fired some distance from outside the ground if it came from a crossbow.

The Division One encounter - which was meandering towards a stalemate in the final session, with Middlesex holding a 181-run lead with three second-innings wickets in hand - was officially called off at 5.05pm BST, 45 minutes after the incident occurred. According to report, an or crossbow bolt had landed on the pitch during the match.

Middlesex later confirmed that the match had been abandoned, with the game ending as a draw.

"We don't know much more at the moment".

Middlesex said: "Play suspended at the Oval on advice of security".

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