Gibbs' appeal date confirmed for 24 January
Mon, Jan 22, 2007 12:00 AM
Herschelle Gibbs' appeal against the ban of two Test matches imposed upon him for breaching the ICC's Code of Conduct will take place via teleconference on Wednesday 24 January, the ICC confirmed today. The hearing will be conducted by former Australia captain Richie Benaud, that country's nominee as a Code of Conduct Commissioner, who is acting as the Appeals Commissioner in this matter. The teleconference will also involve Gibbs, his legal representative, ICC match referee Chris Broad and a legal representative acting on his behalf.
ICC In-House Lawyer Ms. Urvasi Naidoo will also be present on the call in an administrative capacity. Under the terms of the appeals procedure, Mr Benaud has seven days in which to hear and determine the appeal following his appointment as Appeals Commissioner. That appointment was confirmed on Thursday 18 January and the appeal will therefore be processed in advance of South Africa's third Test match against Pakistan in Cape Town, due to commence on Friday 26 January.
Mr Benaud has the power to increase, decrease, amend or otherwise substitute his own decision from that made at the previous hearing, and his decision is final and binding. Once Mr Benaud has reached his decision, he must provide it in writing to the ICC's In-House Lawyer, who will then forward it to Gibbs, ICC match referee Chris Broad and ICC Chief Executive Officer Malcolm Speed ahead of any public announcement. Gibbs is appealing the ban imposed after the match referee found him guilty of a Level 3 offence, specifically a breach of clause 3.3 of the ICC Code of Conduct.
That clause prohibits "...any language or gestures that offends, insults, humiliates, intimidates, threatens, disparages or vilifies another person on the basis of that person's race, religion, colour, descent or national or ethic origin." The charge, laid by Malcolm Speed, relates to an incident that took place shortly before the lunch interval on Sunday, the fourth day of the first Test between the two sides at Centurion, when Gibbs' comments were overheard through a stump microphone on the ground.
The hearing was conducted by Chris Broad of the Emirates Elite Panel of match referees after the Test concluded on Monday 15 January. Gibbs apologized for the remark but pleaded not guilty to the Level 3 charge. Richie Benaud, who will hear the appeal, is one of the longest-serving members of the ICC Code of Conduct Commission and is universally respected as a highly knowledgeable and impartial observer of cricket.
He captained Australia in 28 of his 63 Tests, leading the side when it regained The Ashes against England with a 4-0 series win in 1958/59 and, after retiring as a player, he has forged an outstanding career as a broadcaster and journalist.