09/11/2015 7:04 PM AEDT | Updated 15/07/2016 12:51 PM AEST

Mitchell Starc Fined Half His Match Fee For Aggressively Pegging Ball During The First Test

Matt Roberts - CA via Getty Images
BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA - NOVEMBER 09: Mitchell Starc of Australia fields off his own bowling during day five of the First Test match between Australia and New Zealand at The Gabba on November 9, 2015 in Brisbane, Australia. (Photo by Matt Roberts - CA/Cricket Australia/Getty Images)

Australian fast bowler Mitchell Starc is paid to aggressively aim a cricket ball at opposing batsmen.

And that's exactly what cost him half his match fee on Monday, after he was fined for throwing a ball towards the stumps that nearly hit New Zealand batsman Mark Craig on the final day of the first Test.

Starc grabbed a straight shot from Craig and didn't hesitate to fire the ball straight back towards the stumps. Or, rather, towards Craig.

Starc's aggressive streak is what propels him to bowl with such venom and why he's become such a key part of the Australian bowling attack.

But it also leads him astray at times, like on Monday at the Gabba. With Australia cruising towards a 208-run win, it was a completely unnecessary play for Starc to make with the match nowhere near in doubt.

Nowhere near the stumps.

Match referee Roshan Mahanama determined that Starc breached the International Cricket Council's Code of Conduct after "throwing a ball (or any other item of cricket equipment such as a water bottle) at or near a Player, Player Support Personnel, Umpire, Match Referee or any other third person in an inappropriate and/or dangerous manner during an International Match".

Half of Starc's match fee is $7,725.

Australian skipper Steve Smith wasn't happy with his strike left-armer either -- even before Starc was fined.

"I thought it was pretty disappointing," Smith said.

"He's done it a few times and I'm going to have a word to him when I get back down in the sheds.

"I don't think it was necessary at the time and hopefully he can improve and get better from that."

Here's hoping Starc can gather his head in time for the next Test at the WACA in Perth, beginning on Friday, or he'll continue splitting his paychecks with the ICC