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Rabada ban triggers dispute ahead of fourth Test vs England

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Port Elizabeth: Kagiso Rabada was criticised by former West Indies fast bowling great Michael Holding and ex-England batsman Kevin Pietersen on Friday amid heated debate over the decision to ban him from the fourth and final Test against England.
The South Africa fast bowler pleaded guilty to a level one breach of the International Cricket Council’s code of conduct because of the way he celebrated the dismissal of England captain Joe Root during the first day of the third Test at St George’s Park on Thursday.
He was fined 15 percent of his match fee and handed one demerit point.
“He has to learn,” said Holding, who was commentating for SuperSport television. “You can’t keep making the same mistakes. He has to remember he is damaging his team. South Africa without Rabada at the Wanderers — that’s a big blow.”
Fellow commentator Pietersen said the way Rabada got close to batsmen after dismissing them was unacceptable. “He shouldn’t be celebrating in a batsman’s personal space,” he said, adding Rabada had behaved in a similar way after dismissing Zak Crawley during the second Test in Cape Town. “I feel sorry for (South African captain) Faf du Plessis and (coach) Mark Boucher,” said Pietersen. “South Africa are going to miss their strike bowler at the Wanderers.”
However, former England captain Nasser Hussain defended Rabada. “Cricket has shot itself in the foot,” Hussain told Sky Sports. “Was there any physical contact? Was there any sledging? A bowler showed some emotion.
“I don’t think he made a mistake yesterday. He was foolish for someone on three demerit points to do that. I think we’re sanitising the game if we can’t have anything like that.”
“Rabada getting a one game ban for celebrating taking the wicket of the opponents best player is absolutely bonkers…” another ex-England skipper Michael Vaughan tweeted. (AFP)

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