Richardson tells captains to not 'undermine' ICC judiciary process
ICC chief executive David Richardson has come out in support of match referee David Boon's verdict on Ravindra Jadeja, relating to the incident with James Anderson at Trent Bridge, and said MS Dhoni's critical comments on the ruling "undermine" the judiciary process. All parties involved, including Dhoni and Alastair Cook, he said, should "respect the process".
Jadeja was found guilty of a Level 1 offence of the ICC Code of Conduct and fined 50% of his match fee by Boon. However, the verdict didn't go down well with the BCCI and Dhoni, who called it a "hurtful verdict" and said that Jadeja had only turned to look at an England player who was allegedly directing foul language at him. Cook, however, despite admitting he did not see the incident, suggested that India might be exaggerating the seriousness of it in order that Anderson could be forced out of the series.
"England captain Alastair Cook and, more recently, India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni have made public comments relating to the alleged incident that took place during the first Test at Trent Bridge, the latter of which is critical of and undermines the ICC disciplinary process," Richardson said on Sunday.
"The ICC would also like to reiterate its full support of the process followed and respect for the decision made by David Boon. ICC Code of Conduct hearings of this nature are, generally speaking, difficult processes to work through, with detailed legal submissions, witness statements and oral witness testimony. We are satisfied that Mr Boon carefully and comprehensively considered the evidence and submissions presented to him at the hearing, which included conflicting evidence from both sides, prior to making his decision.
"In legal matters such as this, the ICC takes extremely seriously its duty as administrators of the game. Therefore, I request all stakeholders to respect the process which remains ongoing and remind them of their duties to the integrity of the process and the sport so that we can focus on the game of cricket itself."
The incident is reported to have taken place as the players were leaving the field for lunch on the second day of the Trent Bridge Test. India alleged Anderson abused and pushed Jadeja, while England alleged Jadeja turned and approached Anderson in a threatening manner. India also disputed testimonies given at the hearing by England players Matt Prior and Ben Stokes that Jadeja's bat was raised dangerously when he turned towards Anderson, and that Jadeja had pushed Anderson first. India claim Jadeja neither touched nor swore at anyone.
Anderson's hearing will be held on Friday August 1 in Southampton and will be conducted by the ICC-appointed Judicial Commissioner, Gordon Lewis.