Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed’s alleged racial epithet has landed him in trouble where faces a possible suspension of up to four ODIs/T20s.
He was rather unlucky that his remarks, which seemed to be aimed at South African all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo, were caught on stump mic.
The video of the incident that went viral on the internet attracted a lot of criticism for the captain.
The following morning, match referee for the ongoing five-match ODI series, Ranjan Madugalle, called Pakistani skipper for an explanation, where he apologized stating that it wasn’t intentional. The referee reportedly forwarded his report to ICC.
Sarfraz, if formally charged, may be suspended for four ODIs/T20s or two Test matches. But, there’s a way he can avoid a suspension.
So, How Can He Avoid Ban?
ICC’s anti-racism rules are pretty harsh, but they offer a way out for the first offender.
Before going towards the possibilities, we should first understand that South Africa team management has not lodged a formal complaint against the skipper.
So, according to ICC’s law, it allows both players to reach conciliation without facing any harsh penalty.
Clause 4.3 of ICC’s anti-racism code allows the process of reconciliation to take place without the offender facing any formal disciplinary action.
In this case, ICC’s Counsel General would seek consent from both players, the offender (Sarfraz in this case) and the victim (Phehlukwayo).
If both parties agree to reconcile, the matter will be sent to a Conciliator to oversee the case under the Clause 4.3.1. The Conciliator will have maximum 14 days (2 weeks) to sort it out.
If things go well, Sarfraz may come clean without having to face any suspension or demerit points under the Article 126.96.36.199.
Article 188.8.131.52 of ICC anti-racism code says:
During the conciliation meeting, the conciliator will discuss the circumstances of the alleged offense with the relevant parties and explore the possibility of reaching a consensual solution for how to resolve the matter without invoking the disciplinary procedure set out in Article 5.
It further adds that:
Such a solution may incorporate, without limitation, any of the following (or any combination of the following) outcomes: (a) the voluntary imposition of a period of suspension (which period must be determined having due regard to the range of permissible sanctions in Article 7.3) by the participant alleged to have committed the offence; and/or (b) a public apology and/or explanation as to the parties’ conduct and circumstances surrounding the alleged offence; and/or (c) a private apology and/or explanation as to the parties’ conduct and circumstances surrounding the alleged offence; and/or (d) a joint press statement being issued about the parties’ conduct and circumstances surrounding the alleged offense and/or its resolution by conciliation; and/or (e) an agreement by the Participant alleged to have committed the offense, to undergo a specified program of education.
While the skipper has already tendered a general apology on Twitter, any harsh action against him seems unlikely.
However, ICC might force him to directly apologize to South African all-rounder if the case goes that way.