ICC warns Pakistan for comment on Oval episode

Published: Tuesday, September 5, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Dubai: ICC Chief Executive Malcolm Speed yesterday issued a ''final warning'' to Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul Haq, the team management and the cricket board for making public comments in relation to the Code of Conduct hearing scheduled to take place later this month.

''I have been very disappointed by some of the public comments that have been made by members of the PCB, team management and captain Inzamam-ul Haq following the Oval Test,'' Mr Speed said in a statement here yesterday.

''Over the course of the last two weeks there has been a stream of unnecessary and inappropriate public comment from the PCB, much of which could be seen as prejudicial to the pending Code of Conduct hearing.

''We have in place a fair and independent process for dealing with the matters that arose out of the Oval Test and all concerned parties will have an opportunity to present their evidence during the hearing later in September,'' he said.

''Ahead of this hearing it is wholly inappropriate for officials or players to comment on the issues that will be addressed, particularly as the ICC Code of Conduct includes a specific offence of 'public criticism of, or inappropriate comment on, a match-related incident or match official'.

''The acute international diplomatic and political sensitivity of this issue has persuaded me not to lay a charge to date but despite the exceptional circumstances I will not hesitate to lay a charge should further inappropriate public comments be made ahead of the hearing,'' Mr Speed added.

Mr Speed confirmed he had raised the matter twice in the past 10 days with PCB Chairman Mr Shaharyar Khan and he had also asked ICC match referee Mike Procter to do likewise with the Pakistan captain and team management.

''There will be plenty of opportunity for Pakistan to put its side of the story in the fair environment of the Code of Conduct hearing. That is the appropriate forum for its views on these matters,'' he added.

Meanwhile, ICC refused to reveal date of the hearing and the statement said ''Details of the timing and venue of the Code of Conduct hearing will be announced in due course.''

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