Faf feels for banned Smith

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Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis has revealed that he sent a sympathetic text message to his disgraced Australia counterpart Steve Smith.

Du Plessis dismissed any suggestion that he or his teammates feel they have any moral superiority to Australia.

The South Africa skipper was embroiled in an ugly tampering saga in Australia in 2016 that much like the latest incident involved airport scuffles.

Speaking ahead of Friday’s fourth and final Test at the Wanderers Du Plessis said: “I feel for the guy.

“You don’t want to see guys going through that and it’s going to be incredibly hard for him over the next days. I just sent him a message of support saying that he’ll get through this, he must just be strong. He appreciated the message. There is a lot of respect between the two of us. He’s a good leader for Australia.”

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Du Plessis played with Smith at the Rising Pune Supergiant last season and feels that he is a good man who has found himself in a bad place.

He added: “I do feel sorry for Steve and I do have a compassion for what he is going through. I think he is one of the good guys and he’s just been caught in a bad place. He’s obviously taken responsibility for that.

“We’re not sitting in a glass house where we think we are better than them in that aspect. It’s a mistake that was made and I feel that, it’s easier said than done, but they can move on now.

“You don’t want to see any cricketer or person go through that amount of pain. I feel for what he’s going through as a captain.”

Du Plessis feels the punishments handed down to the trio of Cameron Bancroft, David Warner and Smith are harsh but he understands what Cricket Australia are trying to do with these sanctions.

When asked if he though the punishment was harsh Du Plessis said: “I think, yes, I think so, but I understand the context of it now.

“Perhaps I didn’t understand how important it is to them, but you can really see how much it means to the Australian public. You can understand why they think they need to be so harsh.”