West Indies' star batsman Marlon Samuels has received a warning for his conduct during his side's ICC World Cup Qualifier match against Zimbabwe at Harare. Samuels has also been hit with a demerit point and charged with a level 1 breach of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel.
The 37-year-old, who was incidentally the Man of the Match in the game, struck an impressive 86 off just 80 balls to help his side successfully chase a stiff target of 290. However, following his dismissal in the 44th over, Samuels was observed to have damaged the 30-yard circle with his bat, resulting in Michael Gough and Simon Fry, the on-field umpires, third umpire Adrian Holdstock and fourth umpire Paul Wilson stepping in and handing him the penalty.
He was charged under Article 2.1.8 of the code which deals with "abuse of cricket equipment or clothing, ground equipment or fixtures and fittings during an international match".
Samuels has reportedly accepted the charge, negating the need for a formal hearing. However, he needs to be on his best behaviour going forward, with four demerit points in a rolling 24 month period making him liable for a suspension.
West Indies, meanwhile, are in prime position to qualify for the 2019 World Cup, sitting pretty at the top of the points table with 6 points from 4 games. After securing comfortable wins against Ireland and Netherlands, they suffered a blip against Afghanistan but bounced back in style, sweeping their way past hosts Zimbabwe. Samuels has been in decent nick himself in the Super Six stage, having amassed two half-centuries in his last three games after a disappointing run in the group stages.