Faf du Plessis: South Africa all-rounder fined for ball tampering

South Africa's Faf du Plessis

The International Cricket Council has fined South African all-rounder Faf du Plessis 50% of his match fee for ball tampering against Pakistan.

Television replays showed Du Plessis, 29, rubbing the ball over a zip on his trousers on day three of South Africa's second Test against Pakistan in Dubai.

Du Plessis pleaded guilty to an ICC Code of Conduct offence relating to "changing the condition of the ball".

The umpires were forced to change the ball, and applied a five-run penalty.

South Africa went on to win the Test by an innings and 92 runs to tie the series 1-1.

Match referee David Boon confirmed the decision to fine Du Plessis, who bowls leg-spin, in an ICC statement for breaching Law 42.3 of the Laws of Cricket,

Boon said: "I am satisfied that the player's actions warranted the umpires applying the ICC Test Match Playing Conditions.

"That includes the laying of a charge under the ICC Code of Conduct against Mr du Plessis in respect of changing the condition of the ball.

"After discussions with Mr du Plessis, he has elected not to contest that charge.

"I am also satisfied that this was not part of a deliberate and/or prolonged attempt to unfairly manipulate the condition of the ball, and that the imposition of a fine of 50% of his match fee is appropriate considering the circumstances."

The last time a five-run penalty was issued for ball tampering was during the 2006 Oval Test between England and Pakistan, when the tourists were adjudged the guilty party.

Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq reacted angrily and decided not to continue the Test in protest.

Australian umpire Darrell Hair duly awarded the game to England - the only forfeited match in Test history.

This month, the ICC amended its laws regarding the condition of balls, saying "if a player responsible can be identified" the ball will be changed, a five-run penalty will be awarded and the player responsible will be reported.

Altering the condition of the ball is a level two offence under the ICC's Code of Conduct, which carries a penalty of 50-100% of their match fee and/or suspension from one Test or two one-day internationals for a first offence.