After a lot of hue and cry about his two Tests suspension, South Africa speedster Kagiso Rabada has finally decided to appeal his sanction for the ‘shoulder contact’ incident involving Australia skipper Steve Smith.
Rabada, who bowled South Africa to a series-levelling victory with 11 wickets in the second test in Port Elizabeth, was found guilty of the Level 2 offence and consequently received a fine of 50 percent of his match fee besides getting three demerit points.
ICC match referee Jeff Crowe deemed that Rabada was guilty of “inappropriate and deliberate physical contact with a player”. Since Rabada has accumulated eight demerit points within a 24-month period, it automatically resulted in a two-match suspension.
“ICC confirms that Kagiso Rabada has appealed against the Level 2 breach following the incident with Steve Smith during the Port Elizabeth Test. ICC will now appoint a Judicial Commissioner at the earliest opportunity and hearing details will be confirmed in due course,” the governing body tweeted on Wednesday (March 14).
ICC confirms that Kagiso Rabada has appealed against the Level 2 breach following the incident with Steve Smith during the Port Elizabeth Test. ICC will now appoint a Judicial Commissioner at the earliest opportunity and hearing details will be confirmed in due course.— ICC Media (@ICCMediaComms) March 14, 2018
The ICC will now appoint a commissioner within 48 hours and a hearing will take place in the next seven-day period. Until then, Rabada will remain suspended. The commissioner will take the final call whether regarding the No. 1 Test bowler’s presence in the third Test, scheduled to start on March 22 at Newlands, Cape Town.
During the Port Elizabeth Test, Rabada was also hit with a Level 1 offence for screaming in the face of David Warner having castled the Aussie opener in the second innings for just 13. He copped one demerit point for the colourful send-off to Warner.
“I found that there was contact between Rabada and Smith, and in my judgement the contact by Rabada was inappropriate, and deliberate. He had the opportunity to avoid the contact, and I could not see any evidence to support the argument that the contact was accidental.
“It is also disappointing that this has happened the day after the pre-match meeting I had with both teams, where the importance of respect for opponents was highlighted. I take no pleasure in seeing a player suspended, particularly a young player of Kagiso’s talent, but he has now breached the ICC Code of Conduct on a number of occasions,” the ICC match referee Jeff Crowe had stated following the hearing on Monday (March 12).