James Faulkner handed two-year driving ban
Australian all-rounder James Faulkner was banned from driving in the United Kingdom for two years and handed a fine of £10,000 after pleading guilty to the offence of drink-driving, ESPNCricinfo reports. He has already been handed punishments by his national side and Lancashire, for whom he was playing for in England at the time of the incident.
On July 2, Faulkner hit the back of a BMW 3 Series car in West Didsbury, Manchester driving his Toyota and a subsequent breath test revealed alcohol content of nearly three times the allowed limit. He was arrested and taken to Longsight Police Station where he gave a further breath sample with a reading of 100mg of alcohol.
Manchester Magistrates' Court did not buy Faulkner’s excuse that he had got behind the wheel to avoid walking the one mile home as it was raining heavily following a dinner with one of his friends from Tasmania, thought to be Australian wicketkeeper Tim Paine.
District Judge Mark Hadfield, delivering the judgement, said: "I am sure you accept it was foolhardy in the extreme to get behind the wheel of your vehicle having been out for a meal with your friend."
Faulkner accepted the sentence and tendered an apology for his behaviour that led to the unfortunate incident. Speaking on behalf of Faulkner, his manager Phil Weston said that his client was “deeply embarrassed and sorry” for his actions.
"My decision to drive that day was wholly my own and clearly it was an error in my judgement," Mr Weston said, as reported by 9 News. “I apologise unreservedly for my behaviour but I accept this does not and should not excuse my actions. I want to reiterate my regret for my actions which I know is not fitting of any member of society and particularly a professional sportsman and public figure such as myself."
Cricket Australia(CA) had already handed Faulkner a four-match suspension which ruled him out of the limited overs matches in England. He will miss the matches against Ireland on August 27, and England on August 31, September 3 and September 5.
"Faulkner will also have to undergo an alcohol management counselling programme, as determined by the Cricket Australia chief medical officer and pay for any damage to property caused by his actions while driving," the CA statement further stated.