Cricketer James Faulkner has been hit with a fine of £10,000 after pleading guilty to driving while under the influence of alcohol. The Australia international was also banned from driving for two years for an incident on 2 July which saw him ram another vehicle in Manchester.
Subsequent tests found that he had almost three times the legally permitted amount of alcohol in his blood at the time of the crash. The court heard the all-round cricket star, who currently plays for Lancashire, had been to a restaurant before the crash in the West Didsbury area of Manchester.
Mr Faulkner claimed that driving home was an error of judgment and he only did it as he would have had to walk one mile in a thunderstorm. Handing out the ban and fine to the cricketer, judge Mark Hadfield said it was imprudent to have driven home after a meal and consuming so much alcohol.
The judge continued by saying the fine reflected that the defendant’s personal circumstances made community service work or a night-time curfew impractical options. Six referees offered written references testifying to the cricketer’s good character.
Lancashire cricket director Ashley Giles wrote one of the references and was also in court when his star player was sentenced. Mr Faulkner had previously posted an apology for his actions on the Cricket Australia website and said he felt he had let people down.
As a result of being charged with drunk-driving, he was suspended for four matches during the Australian British tour. The player’s Lancashire contract is due for renewal in two weeks time.