England’s James Anderson has been cleared of a Level Three breach of conduct, leaving him free to play in the rest of the series against India, reports The Daily Mail.
After an ICC hearing on Friday, Anderson was found not guilty of pushing Ravindra Jadeja, whose case has also been dropped.
Prior to the announcement, there had been increasing concern at the level of Indian influence on the governing body, and the recent appointment of Narayanaswami Srinivasan as chairman has done little to improve that situation.
The eyes of the cricketing world were barely on Anderson, or Jadeja, and their potential punishments – which, for the former, could have been up to a four-Test ban – but on the ICC.
Although England are part of the ‘Big Three’ (the others being India and Australia), India contribute most to the ICC in terms of funding. However, despite fears of India paying the piper and calling the tune, the hearing appears to have resulted in a fair outcome.
Dhoni hits out
India captain Mahrendra Singh Dhoni has not hesitated in making his opinions on the matter apparent, leading the calls for Anderson to be banned and Jadeja cleared.
However, he can think himself lucky that his side were allowed to appeal Jadeja’s Level Two charge – contrary to what the law states.
Dhoni himself has been widely criticised as a witness, as he has only just had an arrest warrant cancelled by the Supreme Court in the India. The warrant was initially issued after Dhoni was accused of upsetting Hindus by taking part in an offensive magazine cover, but he failed to appear in court despite three summons.
The culmination of the spat, which took place at lunch in the pavilion during the first Test at Trent Bridge, will hopefully spell an end to the ill-feeling that has marred the series. England captain Alistair Cook dismissed the allegations against Anderson as India making “a mountain out of a molehill”.
A committee came to the decision after six hours, which included a viewing of CCTV footage of the incident.
The prospect of a ban would have proved particularly costly to England. They may have levelled the series, finally ending their year-long wait for a Test victory, but the Three Lions simply cannot afford to lose Anderson, who was awarded man-of-the-match at the Rose Bowl after taking seven wickets.
England and India will contest the final two Tests at Emirates Old Trafford and the Kia Oval.