Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed has been suspended for four matches by the International Cricket Council, and will also undergo an education programme following his “black guy” comments towards Proteas all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo.
Sarfraz was a surprise absentee at the toss for Sunday’s fourth ODI at the Wanderers, with Shoaib Malik standing in as the Pakistan skipper, as the ICC had not yet made an announcement.
But about 40 minutes after the toss, which Malik won and chose to bowl first, the ICC broke the news on their social media channels and website.
“Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmed has been suspended for four matches after accepting that he was in breach of the ICC’s Anti-Racism Code for Participants following an incident that occurred during the second ODI against South Africa in Durban on Tuesday,” read the statement.
“Sarfaraz aimed a comment at South Africa all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo which resulted in Sarfaraz being charged with an offence under the Code, namely;
‘Engaging in any conduct (whether through the use of language, gestures or otherwise) which is likely to offend, insult, humiliate, intimidate, threaten, disparage or vilify any reasonable person in the position of a Player, Player Support Personnel, Umpire, Match Referee, Umpire Support Personnel or any other person (including a spectator) on the basis of their race, religion, culture, colour, descent, national or ethnic origin’.”
The wicket-keeper will miss today’s Pink ODI and the final 50-over match at Newlands on Wednesday, as well as the first T20 International at the same venue next Friday and the second encounter at the Wanderers next Sunday.
ICC chief executive David Richardson said: “The ICC has a zero-tolerance policy towards conduct of this nature.
“Sarfraz has promptly admitted the offence, was regretful of his actions and has issued a public apology, so these factors were taken into account when determining an appropriate sanction.”
The ICC said that Sarfraz will also have to complete an education programme “to promote the understanding and awareness of issues directly relevant to the offence that he has committed. The ICC will work with the PCB to determine when and how this should take place”.
The matter was reported by ICC match referee Ranjan Madugalle, where after ICC General Counsel Iain Higgins decided that the Sarfraz had a case to answer.@ashfakmohamed