Pooran will now miss the next four T20 International games for the West Indies and will have five demerit points added to his record. The game in question took place in Lucknow on Monday.
“Nicolas Pooran has been handed four suspension points after admitting breaching level 3 of the ICC Code of Conduct for Players and Player Support Personnel…,” the International Cricket Council said in a statement.
“Pooran was charged with violating Article 2.14 of the code, which relates to ‘changing the condition of the ball’ after video footage showed him scratching the surface of the ball with his thumbnail,” it added.
Pooran admitted the offence on Tuesday and accepted the sanction proposed by match referee Chris Broad.
“I recognise that I made an extreme error in judgement and I fully accept the ICC penalty. I want to assure everyone that this is an isolated incident and it will not be repeated,” Pooran stated.
“I want to issue a sincere apology to my teammates, supporters and the Afghanistan team for what transpired on the field of play on Monday in Lucknow.
“I recognise that I made an extreme error in judgement and I fully accept the ICC penalty. I promise to learn from this and come back stronger and wiser,” he added.
The charge was levelled by on-field umpires Bismillah Shinwari and Ahmed Durrani and third umpire Ahmed Pakteen as well as fourth umpire Izatullah Safi.
Level 3 breaches carry a minimum penalty of four suspension points which translates to five demerit points on a player’s record and a ban of two Test matches or four ODI/T20I matches and a maximum penalty of 12 suspension points which equate to six demerit points.