The playing control team in charge of the second Test between South Africa and Pakistan admitted on Friday that a mistake had been made when star home batsman Jacques Kallis was given out.
Kallis was given out caught at short leg off spinner Saeed Ajmal by umpire Steve Davis but the batsman immediately sought a review, which went to television umpire Billy Bowden.
Replays showed the ball had not touched Kallis' bat before looping to Azhar Ali.
The sequence of events after that was not clear but after numerous replays Kallis was given out leg before wicket.
That was because the pitch map replay indicated the ball would have brushed the outside of his leg stump, which is within the area known as "umpire's call" where the benefit of the doubt goes according to the decision made by the on-field umpire.
Kallis made two as South Africa struggled to 139 for five in reply to Pakistan's 338.
The International Cricket Council issued a statement from Dubai acknowledging that "an honest error" had been made.
"The umpires followed usual umpiring principles in giving Kallis out lbw on umpire's call. The review was for the batsman out caught. This is because the normal principle is that an appeal covers all forms of dismissal," said the ICC.
"However the playing conditions state that when the third umpire observes that the batsman could be out by another mode of dismissal, the decision being reviewed using DRS should be as if the batsman had been originally given not out.
"Therefore in this instance Kallis, as the point of impact was umpire's call, should not have been given out."
Kallis appeared astonished when he was given out and stayed at the wicket, appearing to seek an explanation, before reluctantly heading to the dressing room.
Before the ICC statement was issued, South African team manager Mohammad Moosajee said he could not comment in detail because there was a code of conduct regarding the decision review system.
"All we did was seek clarity from the umpire, which we were happy with," he said.
"The rule states that if an umpire has given a batsman out and the batsman appeals, he can be given out for something else."