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Banned Gambhir misses final Test

Gautam Gambhir
Gambhir top scored for India in the first innings of the third Test with 204

India opening batsman Gautam Gambhir will miss the final Test against Australia on Thursday after his appeal against a one-match ban was rejected.

Gambhir was handed the suspension by match referee Chris Broad for elbowing Australia all-rounder Shane Watson on the first day of the drawn third Test.

An International Cricket Council appeals commission upheld the verdict.

The loss of Gambhir, who hit a double century in Delhi, is a blow to India, who lead the series 1-0.

Albie Sachs, a senior judge on the Constitutional Court of South Africa, was appointed by the ICC to hear the case.

The Indian board, were unhappy with his decision, however, and sent an objection to the ICC about the speed with which the appeal was dismissed.

A BCCI statement said: "The said order has been passed without affording the player an opportunity of personal hearing, legal representation and without acceding to his request for certain documents/recordings to be given to him and also denying him an extension of time."

In his letter to the ICC, BCCI secretary N Srinivasan said: "The decision seems to be pre-decided," and added it was in "violation of principles of natural justice."

But ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat dismissed the claims and said: "The ICC code of conduct is a robust and independent process designed to achieve a fair and proper outcome.

"Although we have received an objection letter from the BCCI, there is nothing more that we can do as the appeal commissioner's decision is a final and binding decision. The matter is now closed."

606: DEBATE

Summing up the case, Sachs said: "Gambhir had been the victimof prolonged and persistent verbal abuse by members of the Australian team,culminating in a moment of anger that led to his unfortunate lapse.

"But cricket is not a contact sport. Small collisions can lead to big ones. Deliberate collision can never be condoned, however grave the provocation."

Gambir, who hit 204 in the first innings in Delhi and 104 in the second Test in Mohali, pleaded guilty on Friday and was given the ban, while Watson was fined 10% of his match fee.

The 27-year-old escaped a harsher ban of two Tests for his second offence in a year.

Last November he was fined 65% of his match fee for clashing with Shahid Afridi in a one-dayer against Pakistan and he had faced a penalty ranging from 50% to all his match fee and/or a ban of one Test or two one-day internationals for his clash with Watson.

Gambhir is the second India player to be penalised during the series after Zaheer Khan was docked 80% of his match fee for an aggressive celebration after dismissing Matthew Hayden during the 320-run second Test victory.

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see also
Gambhir ton makes Australia toil
29 Oct 08 |  Cricket
India v Australia photos
30 Oct 08 |  Cricket
Australia in India 2008
13 Oct 08 |  Cricket


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