Harbhajan banned for 3 Tests

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Harbhajan Singh
Harbhajan Singh

S. Dinakar

Chennai: Off-spinner Harbhajan Singh has been banned for three Tests for committing a level 3.3 offence during the second Test in Sydney, BCCI secretary Niranjan Shah confirmed to The Hindu on Sunday night.

Mr. Shah said the Indian Board would appeal against the ban to the ICC. “We are waiting for the complete report of the match referee. As soon we get it, we would go on an appeal. Under the ICC rules, we have to appeal within 24 hours,” he revealed.

The BCCI secretary added that until the ICC arrived at a verdict on BCCI’s appeal, Harbhajan could continue playing for the country. Harbhajan was, during the third day’s play, accused of making racist remarks against Andrew Symonds by the Aussie camp. The Indians denied the allegations.

Both sides were called for a hearing by Match Referee Mike Procter after the eventful second Test concluded.

Australia wins 2nd Test

Ram Mahesh reports from Sydney:

Australia retained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy on Sunday, equalling the record of 16 consecutive Test wins set by Steve Waugh’s side, after the second Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

Australia prevailed over India by 122 runs with just eight minutes remaining on the fifth day to take an unbeatable 2-0 lead in the four-Test series. Part-time left-arm spinner Michael Clarke claimed the last three wickets to fall in a spell of 1.5 overs to end an excellent match marred by questionable umpiring. “It’s a very special feeling,” said the Australian captain Ricky Ponting.

Australia declared its second innings on 401 for seven on Sunday afternoon, leaving India a target of 333 or, more realistically, a minimum of 72 overs to bat out. After the touring side was reduced to 54 for three, Rahul Dravid (38) and Sourav Ganguly (51) put on 61 for the fourth wicket to resist Australia’s push for victory, but both fell to debatable decisions.

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