India spinner Ravindra Jadeja has been suspended from the third and final Test of the series against Sri Lanka after accumulating six demerit points inside a 24-month period.
Jadeja had come into the Colombo Test with three demerit points, slapped on him for running on the pitch in Indore in October 2016. Now, the ICC have penalised him further after an incident in the 58th over of the Sri Lankan second innings.
Jadeja had fielded the ball off his own bowling and then thrown it at the batsman Malinda Pushpakumara* “in a dangerous manner” according to the on-field umpires Rod Tucker and Bruce Oxenford. This was in breach of article 2.2.8 of the player’s code of conduct which deals with “throwing a ball (or any other item of cricket equipment such as a water bottle) at or near a Player, Player Support Personnel, Umpire, Match Referee or any other third person in an inappropriate and/or dangerous manner during an International Match”.
Jadeja admitted to the offence and accepted his sanction by match referee Richie Richardson. In addition to the demerit points, which tallied up to a suspension, he was fined 50% of his match fees. Jadeja had been a vital part of India’s innings victory at the SSC, scoring an unbeaten 70 in India’s innings, and taking a total of seven wickets in the match. With him forced into the sidelines, India might look to play left-arm wristspinner Kuldeep Yadav in Pallekele on August 12.
According to the ICC’s code of conduct, four demerit points equate to two suspension points, and eight demerit points amount to four suspension points. If a player picks up two suspension points within a 24-month period – as Jadeja has – he will be suspended from one Test or two ODIs or two T20Is, whatever comes first. If he picks up four suspension points during the period, he will be suspended from two Tests or four ODIs or four T20Is, whatever comes first.
The three demerit points Jadeja picked up in October 2016 will be expunged in October 2018, while the points he got for today’s offence will be wiped from his record 24 months from today. If he picks up two more demerit points before October 2018, meaning he totals eight demerit points, he will face the penalty of a two-Test/four-ODI/four-T20I suspension.
*06/08/2017: It was earlier erroneously reported that the batsman was Dimuth Karunaratne