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March 28, 2014
Faf du Plessis will take no part in South Africa's final group stage match at the World T20, against England on Saturday, after he was suspended due to South Africa's slow over-rate against Netherlands.
It was their second sanction of the tournament. Du Plessis and the South African team were fined after their second group match against New Zealand in which they were deemed to be two overs short of the target. Du Plessis had to cough up 40% of his match fee with the rest of the team giving up 20% each and the captain was aware that if he used up too much time again, he would be forced to miss a match.
Against Netherlands, South Africa were found to be one overs behind the rate. South Africa defended totals on both occasions and used up time setting fields towards the end of the innings.
AB de Villiers will lead the team against England in his absence with the extra batsman in the squad, Farhaan Behardien will bat in the middle-order with JP Duminy likely to move up to du Plessis No.3 spot.
Du Plessis, who pleaded guilty, became the second player banned on Friday after Sri Lanka's captain Dinesh Chandimal was handed the same punishment for his team's over-rate against England. Meanwhile, England's captain Stuart Broad is flirting with the same - he was fined for a first offence and knows he is one more punishment away from a suspension.
This is not the first time South Africa have been without a first-choice captain for an over-rate offence. De Villiers was suspended for two ODIs in a series against New Zealand in early 2013.
De Villiers has had to step in twice during the group stage of the World T20. He led South Africa in their opener against Sri Lanka because du Plessis was nursing a hamstring injury. South Africa lost that match but won both the games that followed to leave them a victory away from a semi-final spot. If South Africa beat England on Saturday, they will be through to the final four.
Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondentFeeds: Firdose Moonda
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