Tuesday 24 January 2017

'Toughest Trade' cricketer Steven Harmison hit with 12-game ban after bust-up with ref

Published 06/04/2016 | 08:13

Steve Harmison
Steve Harmison

We are certain that England cricket great Steve Harmison didn't pick up this behaviour from Borris-Ileigh.

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Pace bowler Harmison was a key member of the England squad in 2005 that won back the Ashes for the first time in 18 years and he's now manager of non-league football outfield Ashington in the Northern League.

He recently he found himself playing hurling for Tipperary club side Borris-Ileigh for The Toughest Trade, an AIB-commissioned documentary.

The former Ashes hero turned non-League football manager has been given a 12-match ban following a bust up with a referee.

Harmison took charge of Northern League side Ashington last February and saved the side from relegation. But now the 37-year-old finds himself in hot water with the Northumberland FA after he allegedly confronted the referee during their 1-0 defeat to Bishop Auckland.

Ashington striker Andrew Bulford was sent off for a challenge which took place near the touchline and saw Harmison lose his cool.

Harmison, who was forced to stop playing football competitively as a teenager when he signed his first professional cricket contract with Durham, will start his ban on April 11.

When Harmison took over the reins at Ashington, the former fast-bowler said it would be unlikely for him to "blow my top".

“I never responded well to being shouted at as a player, so I can’t imagine I’ll be one of those, but I always made my voice heard. I was never disruptive, but I had an opinion. I can spot a bad apple too," he said at the time.

"I was never a shouter as a player and never said a great deal to batsmen – I didn't have to.

"The moment you lose your temper then you lose control."

Harmison has this season steered Ashington to mid-table security with 10 games of the season left to play - meaning the former Durham cricketer will not be on the touchline until the new campaign now.

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