Australian captain Ricky Ponting has been fined 40 percent of his match fee for his on-field conduct during day two of the fourth Ashes test against England at Melbourne.
Ponting was involved in an ugly altercation, which lasted over a minute, with umpire Aleem Dar over his unsuccessful review of a not-out decision against England's Kevin Pietersen.
After the day's play, Ponting pleaded guilty to a level one offence, and match referee Ranjan Madugalle fined him 40 percent of his match fee.
Madugalle said, Ricky's actions as captain of his country were unacceptable. A captain is expected to set the example and not get involved in a prolonged discussion with the on-field umpires and question their decision.
While pleading guilty to the charge, Ricky understood that the discussion went far too long. He apologized for his action and stated that he has nothing but respect for the umpires and his on-field actions were not intended to show disrespect to Aleem Dar or Tony Hill.
In the 84th over of England's innings, Ryan Harris' delivery passed the inside edge of Pietersen's bat on the way to wicketkeeper Brad Haddin. Though Harris showed no interest, Haddin immediately rushed to Ponting, prompting his skipper to call for a review challenging umpire Aleem Dar's not-out call.
The Hotspot technology showed nothing on the bat though there was a misleading glow at the bottom of the bat. The third-umpire duly confirmed the not-out call. However, Peter Siddle ran forwards pointing to the big-screen and the misleading glow. Ponting was infuriated and remonstrated with the Pakistani umpire, prompting sections of the crowd to boo, before turning on Pietersen and then the New Zealand umpire Tony Hill at the end of the over.
Ponting can consider himself lucky to have got away with a fine and not be charged with a level two offence, which could have resulted in a 100 percent fine and even a suspension. A level two offence is, dissent (which) contains an element of anger or abuse which is directed at the umpire or the umpire's decision or where there is excessive delay in resuming play (or) there is persistent re-reference to the incident over time
Ponting has come under fire from experts all over, with former Australian skipper Ian Chappell calling for his suspension. Chappell said, If I was adjudicating I'd think a suspension would be in order as the ICC have to get tough about this sort of thing. It's not the first time he has done that but it may be the last.