PORT ELIZABETH (Reuters) – South African Paceman Kagiso Rabada was surprised to be punished for his boisterous celebration of Joe Root's dismissal in the third test against England, but knows he can't let his teammates and himself down.
South Africa's Kagiso Rabada looks depressed after being caught bowling by Mark Wood REUTERS / Siphiwe Sibeko by Englishman Stuart Broad
Rabada was granted a one-off ban by the International Cricket Council, excluding him from the final game of the four series of tests that started in Johannesburg on Friday.
His absence is a major blow to South Africa's hopes of improving the series after a heavy loss in the third test at Port Elizabeth on Monday.
Rabada's sanction related to an incident on the first day of testing last Thursday.
After dropping Root, he ran down the square, dropped on his hips, clenched his fists, and roared into the ground – all under the English captain's nose.
The referees reported him to the referee at the end of the game and he received a point of failure and a fine of 15% of his playing fee after he was found guilty of violating the ICC Code of Conduct.
It was his fourth minus point in 24 months that triggered a one-off ban.
"I didn't expect that," said Rabada on Tuesday.
"Whether it was the right thing to banish me or the wrong thing, the reality is that I will be banned.
"It can't go on like this because I'm letting the team down and letting myself down. That's why it hurts so much, but it gives me the opportunity to work on my game and get some rest."
Rabada, fourth in the ICC test bowler rankings, said he was confident that South Africa could reach the series without him, but little has changed for the home team as the ban was only one of several setbacks.
"We didn't do ourselves a favor, it feels like we're always hunting," he added.
"We have played long enough to know how to get out of a crisis, but it is difficult. There is more pressure, we just have to recognize our strengths and trust our skills and play as we know it."
Edited by Peter Rutherford