IPL news May 18, 2011

Warne fined for dispute with Dixit

ESPNcricinfo staff

Shane Warne has been fined US$50,000 by the BCCI but was spared a ban for his public spat with Rajasthan Cricket Association (RCA) secretary Sanjay Dixit over changing of pitches in Jaipur during the IPL. On Tuesday the pair faced an IPL commission, comprising Ravi Shastri and league chairman Chirayu Amin, which ruled Warne to be in "serious breach of his IPL playing contract" for criticising Dixit.

The RCA had complained to the BCCI and IPL that Warne reportedly abused Dixit after his team's loss to Bangalore in Jaipur last week. The pitch used for that game, and the previous one against Chennai Super Kings, was different from the one Warne's team had enjoyed a strong home advantage on.

In taking its decision the commission took into account Warne's apology to Dixit and his status as one of the all-time greats of the game. "It (the Commission) regards the public criticism of Mr. Dixit as being a serious breach by Mr. Warne of his IPL playing contract," a BCCI release said.

"However, at the same time, the Commission also recognises that Mr. Warne has apologised to Mr. Dixit, and that the incident occurred just after the match. In addition, the Commission is cognisant of the contribution to the game of cricket in general, and to the Indian Premier League, which has been made by Mr. Warne."

The Commission also said that further breaches could result in a fine, a match ban or points deduction for the player's team, or a combination of the three.

Since the pitch was changed on May 9, Warne and Dixit have engaged in a war of words that has been fought in public, private and through the media. The hearing in Mumbai followed RCA's rejection of an apology offered by the Rajasthan franchise, with the state board also threatening further action if the matter was not resolved to its satisfaction.