HEARTLESS vandals have rendered a carefully tended cricket pitch unusable after performing ‘donuts’ on it.

Players for the Kingston Lacy Cricket Club were left ‘devastated’ after discovering a car had been driven over the ground, leaving deep marks in the grass.

It is believed that the pitch, in Pamphill, near Wimborne, will be out of action for some time after the incident took place on Friday night.

Jacqueline Charman’s son Dan, 15, plays for the team.

She said: “At some point overnight, somebody with a vehicle has gone up there and they have driven ‘donuts’ all around the pitch.

“It’s just unbelievable. One man works all through the winter to keep the pitch just right.

“He nurtures it – it’s like the Oval. For all that time and heart that’s gone into it to be wasted is just heartbreaking.”

Members of the team – who range in age from 15 to 70 – met at the ground on Sunday and grimly surveyed the damage.

Jacqueline said: “There are rivets four inches deep crossing the land.

“I could have cried seeing it. It’s an open area, so it wouldn’t be hard to access, but it’s in a very rural place and somebody has obviously taken the time to drive there and ruin it for everyone.”

The green is on National Trust land at the Kingston Lacy estate.

“This is a wonderful community club,” said Jacqueline.

“The members play because they love the game. There is a real sense of devastation.

“I would ask for anyone who knows the person responsible for this to come forward and speak to the police.

“I think that person should pay for the seed and give the time it takes to restore this wonderful pitch.”

Chairman Steve Maine said: “There’s a lot of work that now needs to take place because of this.

“We’ll have to hope we’re ok before our next home game against Bridport at the weekend.”

He added: “Our 70-year-old groundsman, who has played cricket since he was 14, was in tears when he saw it.

“He spends a lot of time up there. It’s devastating.”

Police are investigating the incident – to speak to officers call 101.