South Africa's Kagiso Rabada ban reduced after appeal

The incident in question occurred on day one of the second Test in Port Elizabeth, when Rabada bumped into Smith's shoulder after dismissing the Australia skipper.

South Africa head coach Ottis Gibson is thrilled that Kagiso Rabada will be available for the third Test with Australia after his suspension was lifted on appeal.

But now the World No 1-ranked bowler in the five-day arena is free to lead the Proteas attack against Australia in the third Test at Newlands on Thursday, with the series locked at 1-1. Rabada, however, is on his final warning. That punishment did not constitute enough demerit points for a ban. He's just very excited and exuberant sometimes.

"There has been no aggressive intent other than celebrating a wicket. He had done it before and had five offences in 14 months". The commission discussed Rabada's matter on Monday which took just over six hours to complete.

"He's a strong character", he said.

"I had to nearly force him to warm up because all he wanted to do was get stuck in and be with his teammates".

However, Rabada appealed the verdict, arguing that the shoulder contact was accidental in an appeal hearing that lasted nearly six hours on Monday (March 19).

"I think in any hearing you've got to be as happy as you can be, we've put our side of the story across and now it's up to the Judicial Commissioner to make a stand on what he thinks. At the same time we will always support our players in situations like these‚ where we believe the code of conduct has been unfairly enforced upon us".

"The key issue is whether Mr Rabada made "inappropriate and deliberate physical contact" with Mr Smith‚" Michael Heron‚ the New Zealand queen's counsel appointed to hear Rabada's appeal‚ was quoted as saying in an International Cricket Council (ICC) release on Tuesday. He says here, "I'm not comfortably satisfied that Mr Rabada meant to make contact and therefore find him not guilty" but then he goes on to say: 'I considered the conduct inappropriate, lacked respect for his fellow player and involved non-deliberate and minor contact'. If I am honest I thought we played at about 40 percent in PE. "I saw somewhere the Aussies saying they want to play against the best teams and the best players‚ so I'm sure they'll also be delighted that he's playing". "It's going to be another good test for us and our batters and the ICC has made its decision and we respect that". It's not for me to sit here and say whether it is right or wrong.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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