India’s Ravindra Jadeja has been found guilty of a Level 1 breach of the ICC Code for Players and Player Support Personnel for his involvement in an incident with James Anderson during the second day of the first cricket Test against England at Trent Bridge on 10 July. Jadeja was fined 50 per cent of his match fee by David Boon of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees, who found him not guilty of the offence which he was originally charged with, but found him guilty under Article 2.1.8, that relates to ‘conduct contrary to the spirit of the game’. Jadeja was reported for a breach of Article 2.2.11 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel by England team manager Phil Neale on 16 July for his alleged altercation with Anderson after they had left the field for lunch.
Under the Code, Boon held a hearing in Southampton on Thursday evening, which was attended by both the players, their legal counsels, witnesses as well as BCCI’s MV Sridhar, Phil Neale and Paul Downton of the ECB, and the ICC’s Ethics & Regulatory Lawyer. The hearing lasted nearly 150 minutes before Boon and included oral statements by the players, video footage and cross-examination of the witnesses by Kendrah Potts, counsel representing the ECB, and Jonathan Ellis, who represented Jadeja. Under article 7.6.5 of the Code, Mr Boon was empowered to find Jadeja guilty of an offence of a lower level than that with which he was charged if he found him not guilty of the original offence.
Commenting on his decision, Boon said: “Under Article 6.1 of the Code, I had to be comfortably satisfied that the offence had occurred in order to find Jadeja guilty of an offence under Article 2.2.11. “While I was in no doubt that confrontation did occur, and that such conduct was not in the spirit of the game and should not have taken place, I was not comfortably satisfied that this was a level 2 offence. Therefore, in exercising my discretion under Article 7.6.5 of the Code and having heard all the evidence, I was comfortably satisfied that Mr Jadeja had committed a level 1 offence under Article 2.1.8 of the Code.”
Boon will provide his detailed judgement within the next 48 hours. All Level 1 breaches carry a minimum penalty of an official reprimand and a maximum penalty of 50 per cent of a player’s match fee. In accordance with Article 8.1 of the Code, a decision in respect of a first Level 1 offence is non-appealable and shall remain the full and final decision in relation to the matter.
Meanwhile, the hearing of Anderson will be held on Friday 1 August and will be conducted by the Judicial Commissioner, His Honour Gordon Lewis AM. Anderson has been charged by India manager Sunil Dev under Level 3, Article 2.3.3 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel, which states: “Where the facts of the alleged incident are not adequately or clearly covered by any of the above offences, conduct that either: (a) is contrary to the spirit of the game; or (b) brings the game into disrepute”. All Level 3 breaches carry a penalty of between four and eight Suspension Points. Two suspension points equates to a ban of one Test, or two ODIs, depending on which type of match is scheduled next for the suspended player.