CAPE TOWN – Proteas star Kagiso Rabada has been officially ruled out of the rest of the Test series against Australia after he was banned by the International Cricket Council for the final two matches for breaching the code of conduct.
Rabada was found guilty of a Level 2 offence by ICC match referee Jeff Crowe for “making contact with Steve Smith with his shoulder” during the Proteas’ six-wicket victory at St George’s Park in Port Elizabeth.
Rabada received a fine of 50 percent of his match fee and three demerit points, which took him to eight during the 24-month period, resulting in an automatic two-match suspension.
A second misconduct charge for screaming at David Warner after bowling the Australian left-hander on Sunday resulted in an extra demerit point and an additional fine of 15 percent of his match fee.
All of this means that the 22-year-old – who was the Man of the Match with a sensational 11-wicket haul in PE – will sit out the last two games at Newlands (March 22-26) and the Wanderers (March 30-April 3).
“I found that there was contact between Rabada and Smith, and in my judgement, the contact by Rabada was inappropriate, and deliberate,” Crowe said in an ICC statement on Monday.
“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.”
In another incident involving Rabada – but with the South African being the victim this time – Australian all-rounder Mitchell Marsh was fined 20 percent of his match fee and received one demerit point for swearing at the bowler after he was dismissed on Monday.