ICC set to crack the whip on sledgers

ICC set to crack the whip on sledgers

ICC set to crack the whip on sledgers

The International Cricket Council will crack down on excessive sledging between players at the World Cup, saying first offenders can expect heavier fines while repeat offenders face suspension from matches.

ICC chief executive David Richardson also said players with already poor records of on-field behaviour could face immediate match bans if found guilty of a single breach of the ICC's code of conduct during the Feb 14 to March 29 tournament.

“That issue has been addressed at all the pre-event team briefings,” Richardson told reporters in Melbourne on Tuesday.

“I suppose it started a few months back already that the behaviour in some matches by some players was deemed to be unacceptable and not a good example to young fans watching the game.

“I think there's been something like 12-13 code of conduct charges laid in the last few months in bilateral series.

“So the crackdown had already started. I think the teams are going to be told that the umpires intend to remains firm, that the penalties handed out by the match referees will be perhaps a little bit more serious or higher than before but that hopefully everyone will be treated equally and fairly.

“For a first offence, you'll likely end up with a fine which no players likes, handing back most of his match fee.

“But certainly a repeat offence, not only in this tournament but some players already sitting with offences behind their name, will be punished with a suspension.”

Pundits have suggested a soccer-style yellow and red card system to better stamp out poor on-field behaviour but Richardson said cricket would continue to rely on post-match reviews with on-field umpires and off-field referees to analyse incidents and lay charges where necessary.

“We don't necessarily want to follow the way that football goes.”

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