New Delhi: Indian batsman Gautam Gambhir has been banned for one Test match. The ban rules him out of the fourth and final Test against Australia starting November 6 in Nagpur.
The Indian met match referee Chris Broad on Friday morning before the start of third day's play where he was informed of the penalty.
Gambhir has been found guilty under Section 2.4 of (International Cricket Council's) ICC Moral Code of Conduct following a spat with Australian all-rounder Shane Watson on the first day of the third Test match against Australia in New Delhi.
FACE-OFF: Gautam Gambhir was also involved in a verbal spat with Simon Katich (foreground).
"The decision to find Gambhir guilty of a level 2 offence is indicative of the fact that any degree of physical contact is unacceptable," Broad said.
After considering the evidence, Broad found Watson guilty of verbally engaging with Gambhir in a manner that was not with the "spirit of the game" and fined the Australian under a Level 1 offence.
"India opener Gautam Gambhir has received a one Test ban after being found guilty of breaching the ICC Code of Conduct during the third Test against Australia in New Delhi," the ICC said in a statement.
Watson was fined 10 per cent of the match fee.
Both players have been charged with violating the "spirit of the game" under the Code of Conduct.
The Indian team management has decided to appeal against the ban.
During the opening day's play, while taking a run Watson hurled some abuses against Gambhir, who stuck out his elbow that hit the Australian all-rounder.
At the hearing that was conducted on Thursday, Gambhir pleaded guilty for not playing in the "spirit of the game".
This is not Gambhir's first offence. He was involved in a front-on collision with Pakistan's Shahid Afridi during a One-Day International match in Kanpur.
Even though both Gambhir and Afridi claimed the contact was accidental, but both were fined.
The incident happened during the third ODI between India and Pakistan on November 12, 2007 following a mid-pitch collision between the two players.
After the collision the duo were involved in a war of words when Gambhir hit a Afridi delivery straight down the ground for a boundary.
In fact it got worse as a furious Gambhir headed straight to Afridi to give him a piece of his mind, resulting in an eyeball-to-eyeball encounter, which was eventually snapped by umpire Ian Gould’s intervention.