Suspension threat to players

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The Independent Online
John Reid, the International Cricket Council match referee, warned World Cup teams that he and his colleagues are looking at imposing suspensions rather than fines to punish player misbehaviour.

Reid was speaking on the eve of England's Group B match against the Netherlands, a fixture he is overseeing.

The former New Zealand Test all-rounder said: "The match referees got together for a meeting in Calcutta before the tournament started and we agreed that fines seemed to be having a limited effect.

"We felt a sterner response by referees should be looked at in this series, so we decided to look more often at suspensions rather than fines."

Reid said one of the main problems was that those fines were not always passed on to the culprits, hence the need for stiffer punishments which would affect the players more directly.

Reid also outlined the areas where match referees were particularly keen to clamp down on. "We are out to stop `sledging', the verbal abuse of players, the pressure of intimidation, and we are also on the look-out for racial abuse," he said.

Reid's fellow referees are England's Raman Subba Row, Clive Lloyd of the West Indies, India's Mansoor Pataudi and Ranjan Madugalle of Sri Lanka.

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