In a major blow to the Kieron Pollard-led West Indies, middle-order batsman Nicholas Pooran has been banned for four T20I games by the International Cricket Council (ICC). The left-hander, who played a key role in his team’s whitewash over Afghanistan in the ODI series, has been convicted of engaging in the act of ball-tampering in the final game versus the ‘Blue Tigers’ in Lucknow.
Video footage from the said act showed Pooran deliberately scratching the surface of the ball with his thumbnail. He instantly admitted to the charge to match referee Chris Broad thus requiring no formal hearing and as a result has been suspended for four T20Is.
The 24-year-old will now be forced to miss the three-match T20I series against Afghanistan and the subsequent first game of three T20Is against India. He was expected to keep the wickets but the presence of Denesh Ramdin in the squad implies the latter will be performing glovework duties.
"I want to issue a sincere apology to my teammates, supporters and the Afghanistan team for what transpired on the field of play on Monday in Lucknow. I recognise that I made an extreme error in judgment and I fully accept the ICC penalty,” Pooran said.