Brisbane: The International Cricket Council fined Australia paceman Mitchell Starc half of his match fee Monday for throwing a ball dangerously at New Zealand batsman Mark Craig.
Starc was fined Aus$7,725 ($5,500) by match referee Roshan Mahanama, the ICC said after Australia won the first Test on the final day at the Grabba. Australia had the match well in hand with the Kiwis one wicket away from defeat when Starc impetuously hurled the ball in Craig's direction after the Kiwi had smacked him for three successive fours. Compounding Starc's frustration was that the throw went for four needless overthrows, which did not amuse Australian skipper Steve Smith.
The fast bowler breached the ICC Code of Conduct, which relates to "throwing a ball (or any other item of cricket equipment such as a water bottle) at or near a player, umpire, match referee or any other third person in an inappropriate and/or dangerous manner during an international match." Starc admitted the offence and accepted the fine.
Smith had already taken Starc to task for the throw in the final stages of Australia's 208-run Test win. "I thought it was pretty disappointing. He's done it a few times and I'm going to have a word with him when I get back down to the sheds," Smith told reporters after the 208-run victory. "I don't think it was necessary at the time and hopefully he can improve and get better from that.
"I don't think he needs to apologise, I just don't think he needs to do it again in the future. "There wasn't an opportunity for a run out and I think it was just a bit of frustration. He needs to let it out in other ways." New ZealandBrendon McCullum took the incident four overs from the end in good grace.
"I hope he was trying to aim at the stumps and if that's the case and it slipped out then we'll give him the benefit of the doubt," McCullum said. Left-armer Starc has a fiery reputation and during an Indian Premier League match last year hurled a ball at Kieron Pollard, enraging the West Indian all-rounder who threw his bat back in Starc's direction before the umpires and other players stepped in to restore order.