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Rabada tops Test bowler rankings but will miss rest of series

The South Africa paceman has been found guilty of misconduct by the ICC.

South Africa paceman Kagiso Rabada may miss the rest of the series against Australia but has the consolation of becoming the top-ranked Test bowler.

The fiery 22-year-old underlined his importance as he took 11 for 150 in the second Test to propel the Proteas to a series-levelling six-wicket victory over Australia.

It was Rabada’s fourth 10-wicket haul in only 28 Tests, which lifted him above England seamer James Anderson to the top spot in the International Cricket Council standings.

However, Rabada will play no further part in the four-Test series against Australia after being found guilty of misconduct on Monday.

Rabada denied deliberately brushing shoulders with touring captain Steve Smith while celebrating his dismissal on the opening day in Port Elizabeth but the ICC rejected the claim.

The three demerit points he received for the altercation took him to eight over a 24-month period and resulted in a two-Test ban.

Match referee Jeff Crowe said: “I found that there was contact between Rabada and Smith, and in my judgement the contact by Rabada was inappropriate, and deliberate.

“He had the opportunity to avoid the contact, and I could not see any evidence to support the argument that the contact was accidental.

“I take no pleasure in seeing a player suspended, particularly a young player of Kagiso’s talent, but he has now breached the ICC code of conduct on a number of occasions.”

Rabada, who missed one Test against England last summer after an incident with Ben Stokes, received an additional demerit point for his reaction after dismissing David Warner later in the Test, taking him to nine in total.

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