There were ugly scenes as the Proteas arrived in Adelaide, as reporters were shoved aside when they tried to talk to skipper Faf du Plessis.
Faf du Plessis’ ball-tampering allegations took a turn for the worse on Monday, as a heated exchange took place between the Proteas security team and Australian journalists when the side arrived at Adelaide Airport.
The Australian media, who now call it the ‘lollygate’ controversy, got too close to comfort, forcing Proteas security guard Zunaid Wadee to intervene. Channel 9 reporter Will Crouch attempted to get a direct quote from Du Plessis, but was shoved aside on numerous occasions. Another Channel 9 journalist, Corey Norris, tried to do the same thing on Sunday and received the same treatment.
The ICC charged Du Plessis with a level 2 offence for ‘changing the condition of the ball in breach of Law 42.3’ during the second Test in Hobart. The skipper has since appealed against the decision, and is likely to be able to play in the day-night Test starting on Thursday.
CSA have since responded to the incidents in a statement from Team Manager Dr Mohammed Moosajee:
The Australian media and Channel 9 News in particular have been advised on numerous occasions over the past few days that Cricket South Africa and captain, Faf du Plessis, are not in a position to comment on the alleged ball tampering issue.
However, despite our best to intentions to co-operate with the Australian media, Channel 9 News’ behaviour has been disappointing. We have advised of our media protocol which has been blatantly ignored, both at the team’s hotel in Melbourne on Friday and Saturday and again at the airport in Adelaide today.
This is the third incident of a reporter aggressively harassing our players with blatant disrespect of the above-mentioned media protocol.
The ‘reporter’ at the airport disrespected us and continued to harass Faf for comment. The ‘reporter’ was also in the unusual position of being in the middle of the players’ walkway to the bus. He was advised to move three times, and did not adhere to this request. The ‘reporter’, who also had no official accreditation, then proceeded to lunge towards Faf with an unknown object causing a direct breach of security protocol. The reporter also shoved the team manager in the back.
Throughout the tour we have respected all our media obligations and treated media with the utmost respect. At the same time, we would like to see this respect reciprocated and will not accept such behaviour as displayed by the Channel 9 News reporter.
Very unfortunate over-reaction but might be worth knowing that aggressive, mic-in-face reporting just doesn’t happen in SA sport. ????
— Neil Manthorp (@NeilManthorp) November 21, 2016
Disappointed.. such provocative behaviour from reporters.Let a man walk in peace.Ask with manners n courtesy and u prob will get a response. — hashim amla (@amlahash) November 21, 2016
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