The South African bowler made shoulder contact with Smith after dismissing him on the opening day of the match in Port Elizabeth, and was hit with three demerit points which ruled him out of the the series.
But the independent judicial commissioner who heard Rabada’s appeal this week was not “comfortably satisfied” that the contact was intentional, and amended the charge to a level one breach of the code of conduct. As a result, Rabada is available to play the remaining two Tests of a highly-charged series.
After the hearing, the Aussie skipper said: “I certainly think he bumped me a little bit harder than it actually looked on the footage. It didn’t bother me too much. What’s the point of over-celebrating? And getting in the face of a batter, you’ve already won the battle. But they’ve obviously decided what’s deliberate contact and what’s not, and apparently it wasn’t.”
He added: “The other person involved not getting asked about it is pretty interesting, I thought. You still want to come up against the best players. That’s part of playing the game and Kagiso is No.1 in the world. It was interesting the way things played out and that he was able to get the charge brought down with an appeal.”