ICC will not tolerate verbal abuse at WC

2015 World Cup

The International Cricket Council chief executive Dave Richardson has vowed that the governing body would come down hard on players who verbally abused opponents at the World Cup, which starts in Australia and New Zealand in mid-February.

Richardson was speaking after Australia's Dave Warner was fined 50% of his match fee for an on-field verbal spat with India's Rohit Sharma in a recent ODI match in Australia.

Over the last year there have been several incidents of verbal abuse seen on the field in international cricket, leading international former cricketers to say that it is only a matter of time before it leads to a physical altercation.

Richardson told icc-cricket.com: "Over the last six months, or even going back further to the last Ashes series, there have been too many examples of player behaviour going too far and overstepping the boundaries of acceptability.

"The amount of sledging and disrespect shown by players to each other was bad."

The former South Africa wicketkeeper also confirmed that the ICC have already sat down and had meetings with match officials about the subject and on how to curb situations before it gets out of control.

He added: "We have done a lot of work with our umpires and match referees to ensure they are much more pro-active in terms of policing behaviour on the field and – when players do overstep the mark – taking appropriate action.

"For the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, it will be no different – and at all pre-event briefings with the teams, the match referees will be making sure that message is delivered loud and clear."