Sunday, 17 November, 2019

Australia skipper Steven Smith fined, suspended for ball tampering

Cameron Bancroft is in the midst of a ball-tampering row during the Newlands Test against South Africa Cameron Bancroft is in the midst of a ball-tampering row during the Newlands Test against South Africa
Shannon Reynolds | 26 March, 2018, 04:36

There have been calls for Smith to step down or be sacked over the premeditated plan hatched during the lunch break on Saturday's third day in Newlands, after the captain admitted being the mastermind.

After a phone call with Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland on Sunday, Smith and vice captain David Warner agreed to stand down from their leadership roles for the remainder of the third test match.

Under-fire Australia cricket captain Steve Smith and opening batsman Cameron Bancroft should have been sent home immediately from the ill-fated tour of South Africa, the Australian Sports Commission chief says.

Sutherland, however, said the 28-year-old would continue to lead the side while the investigation played out.

The team's head of integrity Iain Roy and performance manager Pat Howard are traveling to South Africa Sunday to investigate what happened.

The incident took place during South Africa's innings on Saturday, March 24 afternoon when Bancroft was seen on camera holding a foreign object while rubbing the ball, before hiding the object in his pocket, then inside his pants.

According to Smith, Lehmann and the rest of the coaching staff were not privy to the plan for Bancroft to use sticky tape in an illegal attempt to change the condition of the ball.

Clarke retired from global cricket in 2015 after suffering with a chronic back problem for many years, but when asked whether he would consider a shock return if Smith were to depart, he replied: "If I was asked by the right people, then I would think about my answer".

But Bancroft was caught doing it on the field by television cameras, and then attempted to hide the evidence by shoving the tape down his pants before he was questioned by umpires. "As a young player starting out in global cricket, I hope the lessons learned from this episode will strongly influence the way he plays the game during the rest of his career", he said during the ruling. "We're still the Australian cricket team and we're expected to put up a better effort than what we did today, but certainly it was in some really trying circumstances and probably circumstances that we brought on ourselves".

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"This can occur while Cricket Australia completes a full investigation". "We share your anger and disappointment", added Sutherland.

"The incident that led to the charges being laid took place during South Africa's innings on Saturday afternoon when Bancroft was seen on television holding a foreign object while rubbing the ball, before hiding the object in his pocket, then inside his pants", it added.

Bad light forced the players off shortly afterwards, and when the game resumed after tea Pakistan initially refused to take the field in protest, resulting in the first forfeited match in Test history.

Boos greeted Australia when stand-in captain Tim Paine led the team out at the start of play against South Africa.

Wicketkeeper Paine expressed his remorse for an incident which has tarnished Australia's reputation and was disappointed with the manner in which they crumbled to go 2-1 down in the series with one match to play.

"We'll move on from this and hopefully we'll learn something from this".

He also confirmed that David Warner has stepped down as the vice-captain. How can our team be engaged in cheating like this?

Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi was found guilty of ball-tampering during the fifth and final one-day worldwide against Australia at the Waca in 2010, after he was caught by television cameras apparently biting the ball.

Smith and his team-mates had come under heavy fire from Australian fans on social media, notably.

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