Lord's Gave Me an Envelope with Pounds 400 to Have Abortion; SEX DISCRIMINATION WOMAN LIFTS LID ON CRICKET CHIEFS

Article excerpt

RECEPTIONIST Teresa Harrild rocked cricket yesterday by revealing how Lord's paid for her to have an abortion when she was made pregnant by one of its bosses.

Teresa, 32, who won a sex discrimination case, claimed she:

WAS told have a termination or risk losing any chance of promotion.

WAS handed pounds 400 in an envelope to pay for the operation.

TWICE tried to kill herself because she was so upset.

HEARD cricket chiefs call women players lesbians.

Teresa lifted the lid on the home of cricket after being sacked from her pounds 15,000-a-year "dream job" last June.

She told the tribunal how bosses gave her cash for the abortion because they feared a baby would wreck the career of its father, youth cricket supremo Nick Marriner.

Teresa became his girlfriend soon after starting work for the English Cricket Board.

But problems began after she discovered she was going to have a child.

She claimed ECB chief executive Tim Lamb, a former Middlesex and Northants player, and its finance chief Cliff Barker put enormous pressure on her to end the pregnancy.

She alleged Mr Barker made a pass at her after visiting her home to tell her she was sacked.

The organisation was riddled with sexist attitudes, she added

Teresa said: "The England women cricketers were continually referred to as lesbians and dykes.

"Tim Lamb said on one occasion `we want our good dykes on board so we can get more lottery money'.

"Some members made crude and derogatory remarks about women at the Test and County Cricket Board.

"They said a devout Catholic woman had never had a s**g but she would feel better if she did.

"They said another woman needed to have her legs prised open with a cricket bat.

"Another woman who had gone through a long period of divorce was told all she needed was a s**g to feel happier.

"I really wanted to get into the sports world. Up and until the end of 1996 I really enjoyed working there. I felt it was my dream job."

She told how officials viewed Mr Marriner's job as far more important than hers.

She said: "I got pregnant by him but he wanted me to have a termination.

"I told my supervisor I was pregnant and she told the board.

"Tim Lamb asked me to come in for a chat. He said I was a very bright girl but I couldn't be considered for promotion if I had children. I felt extremely vulnerable.

"He urged me to make up my mind about the pregnancy. I told him I did not have enough cash for it and it would take weeks on the NHS. He said he would have a word with Mr Barker.

"In the following days I was put under more pressure to make up my mind to have a termination. My partner was also pressurising me. …