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South Africa captain Faf du Plessis believes that sledging has no place in international cricket and should be banned.
Du Plessis’ comments came after the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced that they would be reviewing the rules on ball tampering and poor conduct.
South Africa’s ongoing four-Test series against Australia has been plagued with a number of ugly incidents, including Australia opener David Warner’s altercation with South Africa wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock and Proteas seamer Kagiso Rabada making shoulder-to-shoulder contact with ex-Australia captain Steve Smith.
However, while sledging has been a prevalent part of the series, Smith, Warner and Cameron Bancroft took things to a whole new level when they were indicted in a ball tampering scandal.
Smith and Warner, who was deemed responsible for instructing Bancroft to use sandpaper to tamper with the ball on the third day of the third Test in Cape Town, were banned for 12 months by Cricket Australia. Bancroft, meanwhile, was suspended for nine months.
In addition to this, Smith will not be allowed to captain Australia for two years, while Warner won’t be considered for leadership roles in the future.
Given everything that has occurred throughout the series, Du Plessis reiterated his support for a ban on sledging.
“I think so,” he was quoted by Sport24 as saying. “I don’t think that sledging has had that much influence on the way people play. I think it’s something in the past that people maybe thought had a huge impact.
“Maybe there are one or two guys that still feel a bit more pressure when there is a bit of verbal on the field. For me, it motivates me when I hear people say things on the field.
“Generally, in cricket over the past two years I haven’t felt like that boundary has been pushed a lot with playing different teams.”
Even though Australia haven’t shied away from sledging in the ongoing series, Du Plessis admitted that he has never had a problem with it.
“As I said at the beginning of the series, we were expecting that from Australia and that’s the way they play,” Du Plessis said. “I’m not saying that’s right or wrong. Perhaps this is a nice opportunity for them to reassess how they want to play.
“I’ll be honest in saying that I feel that New Zealand are the front-runners in that. They play the game in a nice spirit and we try and do exactly that.”