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July 28, 2005
Sourav Ganguly will remain suspended from international cricket, but his ban has been reduced from six matches to four. Justice Albie Sachs, an independent arbitrator, ruled on Thursday that Ganguly's original punishment for slow over-rates was "too severe". Ganguly has already missed two one-dayers, so he will sit out the next two matches - the opening ties of the Indian Oil Cup - before returning to India's squad at the start of August.
The Indian board had appealed unsuccessfully to the ICC Disputes Resolution Committee about the ban imposed during the one-day series against Pakistan in April, saying that they were unhappy with the process used to deal with Ganguly's first appeal.
But the ICC said in a statement that Sachs had said the ban was correct. However, Sachs had "formed the view that [...] the penalty imposed was too severe in the circumstances", a view which relates to the fact that the Indian side was only five overs behind the rate.
Ehsan Mani, the president of the ICC, said he was pleased the issue had been resolved at last. "Justice Sachs has dealt with all the issues raised by the BCCI in full and highlighted the fact that the process and application of the rules was appropriate."
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