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‘Haris Rauf running his thumb nail over…’: Former South Africa bowler accuses of ball-tampering in USA vs PAK match

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Pakistan pacer Haris Rauf has been hit by a ball-tampering accusation after the team’s harrowing Super Over defeat to the United States in the T20 World Cup 2024 Group A match on Thursday.

Following a dismal batting performance where Babar Azam’s men put up 159 runs in 20 overs, Pakistan’s sturdy four-man pace attack failed to prevent a tie and an eventual defeat. Though the seamers seemed to have found certain swing and reverse-swing through the innings, the US batters held their nerves to pull off an emphatic win at the Grand Prairie Stadium in Dallas.

The win propelled Monank Patel’s team to the top of the Group A standings. The defeat hit Pakistan hard for it was the first meeting between the sides in an international fixture, with the US playing in just their second T20 World Cup match.

Rauf and Co. failed to bring their A-game with the ball, however, former South Africa pacer Juan “Rusty” Theron took to social media to accuse Rauf of tampering the ball to generate movement in the air.

Tagging the International Cricket Council (ICC) in his post on X (formerly Twitter), Theron wrote: “ICC, are we just going to pretend Pakistan aren’t scratching the hell out of this freshly changed ball? Reversing the ball that’s just been changed 2 overs ago?

“You can literally see Haris Rauf running his thumb nail over the ball at the top of his mark,” says Theron who has also represented USA in ODIs and T20Is after completing a switch in 2019.

“@ICC are we just going to pretend Pakistan aren’t scratching the hell out of this freshly changed ball? Reversing the ball that’s just been changed 2 overs ago? You can literally see Harris Rauf running his thumb nail over the ball at the top of his mark. @usacricket,” posted Theron on X (formerly Twitter).

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Even as Rauf had seemingly generated pronounced swing, the right-arm seamer failed to defend 14 runs in the final over which prompted the tie.

The 38-year-old had featured in 36 international matches across formats, picking 55 wickets. Theron has also featured in the IPL with Kings XI Punjab, Deccan Chargers and Rajasthan Royals between 2010 and 2015.

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