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South Africa claim their airport jostling incident with journalist was staged

“As far as our security was concerned it was a direct breach of security protocol and he had to act to protect our players.”

THE CLASH BETWEEN an Australian Channel Nine reporter and South African cricket security staff protecting Faf du Plessis at Adelaide airport was staged, according to the Proteas.

Du Plessis had been under the spotlight after being found guilty of ball tampering in the second Test against Australia at Hobart, the Proteas informing Australian media that the subject was not to be raised upon their arrival for the series finale in Adelaide.

Source: HDFootball MyPassion/YouTube

However, one journalist took no heed of that policy and attempted to question Du Plessis as he walked through the airport, before the reporter was forcibly shoved aside by a member of the Proteas’ security detail.

Australia went on to win the Test – a consolation victory as South Africa took the series 2-1 – and on their return home Du Plessis and team manager Mohammed Moosajee faced the media.

“The behaviour of the journalist was provocative and aggressive,” Moosajee said.

“We’ve got no doubt that it was staged and planned, the way they set it up with the cameras that were there.

The behaviour of the gentleman in Adelaide was unacceptable. As far as our security was concerned it was a direct breach of security protocol and he had to act to protect our players.”

After being found guilty of the ball tampering charge – which Du Plessis has appealed - the South Africa captain was fined 100 per cent of his match fee but allowed to play in Adelaide, where he scored a superb unbeaten century on day one.

“The nice thing is the general feeling from the cricketing world is that they’re on the same page, they agree it was blown out of proportion,” Du Plessis said.

“I learned a lot about myself as a leader. I suppose the biggest thing is how my character was tested.

fafduplessis-cropped_1l2n2a0e31b8a1k7ok8904tpms South Africa captain Faf du Plessis

“When everyone was expecting you to fail, because there was so much going on away from the game, to see my character withstand that is something I will remember.”

Regular captain AB de Villiers, who missed the Australia tour with an elbow injury, is expected to return to the role for the three-Test home series with Sri Lanka around the turn of the year.

“It’s not a massive transition if AB takes over, he will always have my 100-per-cent support and he knows that,” said Du Plessis.

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