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Gautam Gambhir has been given a suspended four-match ban for a dressing room confrontation with Delhi coach KP Bhaskar at the end of the cricket season in March. The inquiry committee, of which former all-rounder Madan Lal was the chairman, in its report concluded that Gambhir’s outburst was premeditated with the intention to humiliate and was highly inappropriate and serious in nature.
Though the committee recommended a four-match ban at the start of the next season, the high court appointed administrator of the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) Justice (retired) Vikramajit Sen decided to suspend the punishment for two years — till March 30, 2019.
However, the reprieve comes with a rider — Gambhir should not be involved in similar incidents during this period.
Gambhir is 35 and the suspended sentence makes him eligible to play two full cricket seasons without facing any sanctions.
“I gave a personal hearing to Mr. Gambhir on 11th June 2017. I thought it prudent not to take a decision during the continuance of the Indian Premier League, for obvious reasons. In the prevailing circumstances, I consider it appropriate and expedient, while accepting the Report & Recommendations of the Committee, to suspend the punishment for a period of two years ending on 30th March 2019 conditional on Mr. Gautam Gambhir accepting this order and provided he does not commit any similar transgressions,” Justice Sen stated.
The three-member committee’s report also recommended that a redressal system for players needed to be set-up while at the same time disciplinary rules need to be established to deter players from indiscipline.
The committee, however, clearly stated the reasons for recommending a four-match ban for Gambhir. “… Mr. Gambhir’s actions towards Mr Pillai (KP Bhaskar) with premeditated intent to humiliate the coach on 06 March 2017 were highly inappropriate and of serious nature. It is recommended that such inappropriate behaviour requires to be penalised not only in a proportionate manner, but in a manner that has a deterrent effect so that it is not repeated and such issues are taken seriously by all team members,” the committee stated.