Australia skipper Steve Smith jumps to defence of South Africa counterpart Faf du Plessis in ball-tampering row

 
Ross McLean
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Smith's Australia trail Australia 2-0 in the three-Test series (Source: Getty)

Australia skipper Steve Smith has leapt to the defence of Faf du Plessis by admitting that his side shine the ball in exactly the same way which has seen the South Africa captain hit with a ball-tampering sanction.

Du Plessis was found guilty on Tuesday after “applying saliva and residue from a mint or sweet, an artificial substance, to the ball in an attempt to change its condition” during the second Test in Hobart last week.

“Every team around the world shines the cricket ball,” said Sydney-born Smith. “I make it very clear that we haven’t come out and said anything about Faf or about how he was shining the ball.

“So look, we along with every other team around the world, shine the ball the same way [as South Africa].”

Former Lancashire player Du Plessis has denied any wrongdoing and believes the International Cricket Council have used him as a “scapegoat”.

The 32-year-old was fined 100 per cent of his match fee as punishment, although he is free to play in the third Test in Adelaide, which was set to start in the early hours of this morning.