Geraint Jones cleared over disputed catch
LONDON: England wicket-keeper Geraint Jones has been found not guilty of breaching the International Cricket Council (ICC) code of conduct following a controversial incident during the recently concluded second Test against Bangladesh.
On Saturday at Durham’s Riverside ground, Bangladesh Nafees Iqbal, on 15, gloved a ball from all-rounder Andrew Flintoff through to Jones and started to walk off. However, replays suggested the ball may have bounced in front of the Kent keeper. Iqbal twice turned back towards the crease in what seemed like an attempt to resume his innings.
An uncertain episode eventually saw him given out after the on-field umpires decided not to refer the matter to the replay official and so ended a fifty stand, then Bangladesh’s best of the series. The tourists were incensed and Bangladesh manager Latif Khan brought the charge against Jones, 28, who was born in Papua New Guinea but grew up in Australia.
However match referee Alan Hurst, the former Australia fast bowler, found Jones not guilty of conduct that brings the game into disrepute at a post-match hearing on Sunday following England’s innings and 27-run win that gave them the two match series 2-0. “On the evidence presented, the actions of the player did not breach the ICC Code of Conduct. Video evidence of the incident was inconclusive, and the player’s intent was not proven,” said Hurst.
The charge against Jones, whose Welsh parents helped ensure his England qualification, was a Level One offence on the ICC scale. All Level One breaches carry a minimum penalty of an official reprimand and a maximum penalty of 50 per cent of a player’s match fee.
Hurst reached his conclusion after a hearing attended by Latif Khan, Bangladesh coach Dav Whatmore, Iqbal, England coach Duncan Fletcher and Jones. England and Bangladesh meet again in the opening match of the triangular one-day series, also featuring Australia, at The Oval on June 16. afp