A joyrider sped around Hawkridge and Cholesbury Cricket Ground in the early hours of Sunday morning – just hours before a memorial game was due to take place.
The vehicle drove around it multiple times in a random fashion, including a few passes across the main square – which had been prepared ahead of the match.
Cricket club chairman Brian Ralphs said: “According to a report from a local resident, a car was heard driving on the field around 4am.
“The car bogged down on the edge of the field, and it was the revving engine which wakened the resident sufficiently for them to get up and investigate with a torch.
“Before the resident could reach the scene, the vehicle freed itself and disappeared.
“It is likely that the vehicle was a four wheel drive, as it both arrived and departed via a footpath behind the clubhouse.”
After hard work by the groundsman and helpers, the field was cleaned up enough for the Kevin Hamblin Memorial match to go ahead in the afternoon.
Kevin had been groundsman at the club for several years, but was tragically struck down by cancer at the age of 51. His widow Jennifer planted a rose to commemorate the occasion.
It has also been learned that the Wigginton sport fields were also driven on that night, so there is a strong likelihood that the driver of the same vehicle was responsible.