South African batter Zubayr Hamza has been suspended for nine months after testing positive for a heart medication that he claimed he took by mistake.
The International Cricket Council (ICC) reported that Hamza, 26, intended to take his own medication but instead ingested his father’s heart medication.
The ICC accepted his explanation and reduced his ban, but he will miss England’s tour this summer. In February, he played the final of his six Tests against New Zealand.
Hamza has a Test average of 17.66 with a high score of 62 from six Tests and has played three Tests against England in the 2019-20 series.
In January, he provided an out-of-competition sample containing the prohibited substance Furosemide.
The ICC’s integrity unit said it “established no significant fault or negligence on his part”.
“I have never intentionally taken a prohibited substance and I am relieved that the ICC determination confirms this fact,” Hamza said.
“The past few months have been difficult for me on a personal and professional level, and I have learnt lessons that I will share with my fellow players.”
The ICC integrity unit manager Alex Marshall said the case is a “timely reminder” cricketers “remain responsible for anything they put into their bodies” and to “know exactly what medication they are taking”.