Close on the heels of the plaudits he won for his 21st Test century, Indian captain Virat Kohli was pulled up by the International Cricket Council (ICC) for his on-field argument with umpire Michael Gough, reported AFP.
Kohli was unhappy at the way the damp outfield was affecting the cricket ball and had expressed that displeasure rather heatedly, hurling the ball to the ground when his plea was not accepted by the umpire. "Kohli received one demerit point for breaching Level 1 of the code of conduct during third day's play of second South Africa Test," an ICC statement said.
"India captain Virat Kohli has been fined 25 per cent of his match fee and received one demerit point for breaching Level 1 of the ICC Code of Conduct during the third day's play in the second Test against South Africa at Centurion on Monday," the statement added.
"Kohli was found to have breached Article 2.1.1 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel, which relates to "conduct that is contrary to the spirit of the game."
"Monday's incident happened in the 25th over of South Africa's second innings when Kohli continued to complain to umpire Michael Gough about the ball being affected by a damp outfield following a rain delay, before throwing the ball into the ground in an aggressive manner," the statement further said.
"After the day's play, Kohli pleaded guilty to the offence and accepted the sanction proposed by Chris Broad of the Emirates Elite Panel of ICC Match Referees and, as such, there was no need for a formal hearing.
"The charge was levelled by on-field umpires Michael Gough and Paul Reiffel, third umpire Richard Kettleborough and fourth umpire Allahudien Palekar," the release further said.
The Level 1 breaches carry a minimum penalty of an official reprimand, a maximum penalty of 50 per cent of a player's match fee, and one or two demerit points. Kohli's penalty evidently falls somewhere in the mid-range of both.