Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent
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Quinton de Kock did not intend to deceive Fakhar Zaman when the batsman was run out in the second ODI between Pakistan and South Africa, and is not in breach of Law 41.5.1 on fake fielding. That is the conclusion match officials are believed to have come to after reviewing footage of Sunday's match, in which Zaman was dismissed on 193 in the final over, with Pakistan 30 runs away from victory.
At the time, Zaman was pushing for a second run to keep strike and de Kock gestured towards the bowler's end, but a direct hit from Aiden Markram at long-off caught Zaman short of his ground at the striker's end.
ESPNcricinfo understands that in a post-match meeting, which officials regularly have to discuss the game, match officials re-looked at the dismissal and on studying all frames, were happy that de Kock called "bowler's end," even before the first run was complete. Although the law states that "it is unfair for any fielder willfully to attempt, by word or action, to distract, deceive or obstruct either batsman after the striker has received the ball," de Kock's actions were not deemed to have been a trick, with officials satisfied that he was indicating for the throw to go to the bowler's end even as it came in at his end. Tabraiz Shamsi tweeted that de Kock was calling for a fielder to back up the throw at the non-striker's end.
In the immediate aftermath of the game, Zaman agreed with that assessment and said it was his "own fault," that he slowed down in completing the second run, because he looked back to see whether his partner, Haris Rauf, was safe. South Africa's captain Temba Bavuma called de Kock's actions "clever," and said, "I don't think he broke the rules in any kind of way."
Pakistan management is believed to have spoken to Andy Pycroft immediately after the incident, and drew his attention to the relevant law. That, it is believed, was not an official complaint as much as a reminder about the law and there appears to be an acceptance that the law is there for match officials to interpret and implement.