Sport

Warne will sit out Thunder clash after copping match ban

MELBOURNE Stars skipper Shane Warne will watch tonight's do-or-die final BBL qualifying clash against the Sydney Thunder from the stands after deciding not to appeal a one-match ban handed out after Sunday night's explosive match against the Renegades.

Warne was fined a total of $4500 after being found guilty of three charges - $1000 for using obscene language, $500 for dissent toward an umpire and $3000 for "engaging in inappropriate and deliberate physical contact" by grabbing the shirt of Marlon Samuels.

Warne was found not guilty of deliberately throwing the ball at Samuels in a dangerous manner.

The West Indian was also hit with two charges from the match, but his hearing was postponed after he suffered facial injuries after being struck by a ball from Stars quick Lasith Malinga.

Speaking after the hearing at Cricket Australia headquarters yesterday, Warne said he understood the need to protect the image of the game, but felt he had been hard done by.

"I'm disappointed in some of my actions, but also disappointed with the severity of the penalty," the 43-year-old said.

"I think that's pretty harsh."

Warne's actions were in response to Samuels having obstructed David Hussey while he was batting in the Stars innings.

Shortly after the players exchanged words, Warne hit Samuels on the arm with an underarm throw, the West Indian responding by hurling his bat in Warne's direction.

It was the third incident involving Samuels during the series. He was previously accused of chucking by Brisbane Heat coach Darren Lehmann and was involved in a verbal stoush with Adelaide Strikers coach Darren Berry.

Renegades coach Simon Helmot yesterday said he was okay with some verbal sparring as long as it didn't step over the line of fair play.

"He (Marlon) is human, he has feelings. It can be tough when you're being continually shot at," Helmot said.

"T20 is about entertainment and having fun, but we've got to make sure we don't go over the line."

Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland said he believed the altercation had been good for the promotion of the BBL competition.

"To be honest I thought it looked like two teams playing in front of a very big crowd in a highly charged environment with a lot at stake," Sutherland said.

"I'm not in anyway condoning breaches of our code of behaviour, but what we saw last night at the MCG was a huge crowd...and two teams which had a lot at stake, basically vying for top of the table in the Big Bash League."

Topics:  bbl, big bash league, cricket, cricket australia, melbourne stars, shane warne, sydney thunder, t20



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