South African pacer Dale Steyn had his entire match fee docked by the ICC for spitting at West Indian all-rounder Sulieman Benn during the third Test of a three-match series between the two sides in Barbados.
“South Africa fast bowler Dale Steyn has been fined 100 per cent of his match fee for breaching the ICC Code of Conduct during his country’s third Test match against the West Indies,” the ICC said in a statement.
Steyn pleaded guilty to spitting in the direction of Benn during the third day of the match in Barbados on Wednesday.
“Steyn was found to have committed a Level 2 breach of the code contrary to clause 2.2.11, which relates to conduct of a serious nature that is ‘contrary to the spirit of the game’,” the ICC stated.
The incident took place when Steyn was dismissed, bowled by Kemar Roach, in the 132nd over of South Africa’s first innings. As he walked off, Steyn appeared to spit in the direction of Benn and, following the day’s play, the charge was brought by on-field umpires Steve Davis and Simon Taufel, third umpire Asad Rauf and fourth official Clyde Duncan.
“Dale’s behaviour was entirely unacceptable and he knows that,” said match referee Jeff Crowe.
“The fact that he was provoked by Sulieman during his time at the crease helps to explain his actions but cannot excuse them. Test cricket can be an examination of one’s emotions as well as skill and players must learn to keep those emotions in check sufficiently to play within the spirit of the game. This was an ugly moment of which I’m sure Dale is not proud,” he added.
Roach has also been fined 50 per cent of his match fee for breaching the ICC Code of Conduct.
Roach pleaded guilty to a Level 1 offence and accepted the punishment handed out by Crowe after play concluded in Barbados on Tuesday.
“He was found to have breached 2.1.8 of the code which relates to conduct of a minor nature that is “contrary to the spirit of the game,” the ICC said.
“Kemar was involved in an unpleasant altercation in the final overs of the Test where he had to be pulled away by one of his fellow players,” said Crowe.
“This was after he received warnings from the umpires and so it could easily have been avoided. It was not acceptable behaviour for a player at this or any level of the game and it’s not the first time Kemar has been involved in such behaviour,” he added.