Cheating? Abusing? Cricketers to now face Strict penalties for on-field offences

Cheating? Abusing? Cricketers to now face Strict penalties for on-field offences

 This after the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced on Monday that it had decided to strengthen its Code of Conduct

New Delhi: ICC announced on Monday that it had decided to strengthen its Code of Conduct and include new offences as well as change the severity of several existing ones.In the backdrop of the ball-tampering incident in South Africa in March where Australian cricketers pleaded guilty, the ICC in its five-day Annual Conference in Dublin concluded that there is an increased need to strengthen its Code of Conduct to maintain the integrity of cricket in all formats and at all levels. Now, the following changes will come into effect to ensure that cricket continues to be played in the right spirit.

Attempting to gain unfair advantage (cheating, other than ball tampering - Level 2, 3 offence

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Personal abuse - Level 2, 3 offence

Audible obscenity - Level 1 offence

Disobeying an umpire's decision - Level 1 offence

Changing the condition of the ball - Level 3 offence (increased from Level 2)

Of the above, the first four are new offences according to the ICC.

ICC also announced that the maximum sanction for a Level 3 offence has now been increased from 8 suspension points to 12 suspension points which is equivalent to 6 Tests or 12 ODIs. It has also been decided that the match referee will now hear Level 1, 2 and 3 charges with a Judicial Commissioner only hearing Level 4 charges and appeals, informed a press release from ICC.

The Rules regarding stump microphone has also been Changed now, recording from it can broadcast at any point in time during a match - including when the ball is dead.

Perhaps themost  significant change however lies in the fact that the ICC has agreed to hold member boards accountable for how their national players conduct themselves. If a player from a particular country has an offence which 'exceeds a certain threshold', the board to which he belongs may also face sanctions. "There is a clear desire here to reclaim cricket's unique proposition as a game that people can trust in and for us all to live the spirit of cricket in a way that is relevant in the 21st century," said ICC chief executive Dave Richardson. 

                                                                

(Inputs from news agencies)

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