Misbah-ul-Haq suspended for over-rate offence
Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq has been suspended by the ICC from the first Test against Sri Lanka in Galle because his team was found guilty of a "serious over-rate offence" during the fifth ODI in Colombo on Monday.
Pakistan were found to be three overs short of their target even after time allowances were taken into consideration. Following the defeat that cost them the series 3-1, Misbah pleaded guilty to the charge laid by the umpires and the penalties were accepted without the need for a formal hearing.
"As this was Pakistan's first serious over-rate offence in the past 12 months, Chris Broad of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees handed Misbah two suspension points while each of his players received a 40% fine (10% for each of the first two overs and 20% for the additional over)," the ICC said in a statement, " … the imposition of two suspension points means that Misbah will now miss Pakistan's first Test against Sri Lanka which starts in Galle from Friday, since such suspension points are to be applied to the subsequent international matches in which Misbah is most likely to participate on a chronological basis immediately following the announcement of the decision."
Pakistan had also been fined for a slow over-rate in the opening ODI of the Asia Cup against Bangladesh in Dhaka on March 11, but that was a minor over-rate offence and not a "serious" one.
The suspension will cost Misbah the chance to break the Pakistan record for most consecutive Tests as captain. Misbah was on 15 Tests, with nine wins, five draws and one defeat. Abdul Hafeez Kardar was captain for 23 matches in a row, while Imran Khan and Waqar Younis had led Pakistan in 16 consecutive Tests.