Faf questions lack of protocols in 'unfortunate' Phangiso saga: 'Why wasn't it picked up?'

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Aaron Phangiso. (Photo by SA20/Sportzpics/Gallo Images)
Aaron Phangiso. (Photo by SA20/Sportzpics/Gallo Images)

There isn't much the inaugural SA20 edition has done wrong, but Faf du Plessis is disappointed that certain protocols were lacking in the Aaron Phangiso saga.

The veteran left-arm spinner was abruptly withdrawn from the tournament after six appearances for Joburg Super Kings for bowling with an illegal action.

Frustratingly for the franchise, who qualified for the semi-finals already ahead of their final round-robin meeting with MI Cape Town at the Wanderers on Monday evening, 38-year-old Phangiso was in outstanding form, scalping 10 victims at a fine economy rate of just over 7 per over and an impressive strike-rate of 12 - translating into a wicket every second over.

The irony is that he's been plying his trade on the domestic circuit with that action since undergoing remedial work back in early 2016, when he was reported too. 

"It's unfortunate. Phangi has bowled for a long time with that action," said Super Kings skipper Du Plessis.

"The question now will now go back to the lead-up to the tournament: why wasn't it picked up then? You don't want stuff like that happening during a tournament, but he accepts that he needs to work on his action and he's busy with the rehabilitation process now. 

"There have been a few guys who've gone through this process and come back to play again." 

READ | Phangiso remains suspended as lab test confirms 'non-compliant' bowling action

While Joburg stoically accepted losing a key player, Du Plessis still extolled Phangiso's immense influence.

"He's a great guy in the dressing room, we love having him and he was a really good performer for us in this campaign."

However, the Super Kings seemingly managed to recruit a relatively unfashionable but effective replacement in Western Province tweaker Kyle Simmonds.

Kyle Simmonds. (Photo by SA20/Sportzpics/Gallo Images)
Gallo Images

The 29-year-old Simmonds was unwanted in the initial auction though the impact of Phangiso's withdrawal prompted Du Plessis and head coach Stephen Fleming to argue for an appropriate like-for-like option.

Wily Simmonds duly delivered with a match-winning spell of 3/23 against Sunrisers Eastern Cape on Sunday, which included the key wickets of Temba Bavuma, Tristan Stubbs and Marco Jansen.  

"We just felt that we wanted someone to take the ball away from the right-handers and there weren't many options left, so we felt Kyle slipped in nicely," said Du Plessis.

"He performed well and gives us extra balance because he can bat too."

First ball on Monday is at 17:30.


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