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Slap on cricket face? Bhajji gets BCCI notice

CNN-IBN
Apr 26, 2008 at 05:49pm IST

New Delhi: Upset over the controversy generated by the altercation between cricketers Harbhajan Singh and S Sreesanth, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has issued a showcause notice to Harbhajan, asking him to respond by Monday.

Harbhajan has been asked explain why disciplinary action should not be taken against him for allegedly slapping Sreesanth on Friday night.

BCCI’s chief administrative officer Ratnakar Shetty spoke to CNN-IBN and said the matter was very serious but also that the showcause to Harbhajan was based entirely on media reports.

“Harbahjan is a contracted player of BCCI and code of conduct for player is applicable to him also. This is a serious incident that has come up and BCCI cannot just say that there is non official complaint and since contracted player is involved, a showcause notice has been issued in his name and will be served to him when he arrives in Mumbai. There is a disciplinary committee which will take necessary action as per code of conduct applicable in this matter. It is very unfortunate and this type of incident should be condemned in strong words and we should not think twice in dealing with such matters,”

BCCI secretary Niranjan Shah, meanwhile, admitted this is not the only such case, the BCCI has received so far and the board plans to take appropriate action against guilty players soon.

“We have received complaints and we are taking them seriously. It will depend on the refree’s report. Indiscipline won’t be tolerated,” he said.

IPL Chairman Lalit Modi too has described the incident as "serious matter" and has admitted such incidents are not good for the tournament.

However, no official complaint has been lodged with the IPL.

Modi says the IPL committee will wait for an official report on the matter before taking the next step.

Harbhajan allegedly slapped Sreesanth after Mumbai Indians lost their IPL match to Kings XI Punjab on Friday night. Sreesanth reportedly said something to Harbhajan which offended the off-spinner.

However, Harbhajan is believed to have had a long chat with Sreesanth in the dressing room of the Punjab team and where he supposedly apologised for his behaviour. But not before he came under widespread criticism from the Punjab Kings XI skipper Yuvraj Singh and coach Tom Moody.

However, he refused to comment on the issue when during the post match conference.

"Can we have questions on just cricket," he said.

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