Banned! Smith, Warner cop 12-month suspensions

Kristopher Nichols
March 30, 2018

Tim Paine, who took over from Smith as captain mid-match in Cape Town as the furore began to unfold, was officially appointed as captain of the Test team on Tuesday. A formal announcement is expected soon.

Captain Smith and vice-captain Warner were suspended for a year, while batsman Bancroft was handed a nine-month ban, after a Cricket Australia (CA) investigation into an incident that occurred in the third Test with South Africa.

Smith and Warner have confessed about their role in the pre-planned strategy to tamper the ball to seek unlawful advantage during the South African innings.

Reports in the Australia media estimate the suspensions could cost Smith and Warner 5 million Australian dollars (US$3.8 million) each in lost earnings and endorsements.

The duo had already stepped down from their roles as captain of their franchises, Smith at Rajasthan Royals and Warner at Sunrisers Hyderabad.

Warner, who is credited with coming up with the plan and showing Bancroft how to do the tampering, was also handed a one-year suspension from global and domestic cricket but is hit hardest by another sanction - the fact that he will never again be considered for a leadership position.

"The CA Board understands and shares the anger of fans and the broader Australian community about these events", Cricket Australia Chairman, David Peever said in a statement.

The Australian ball-tampering scandal has rocked cricket since the moment Cameron Bancroft was caught on camera stuffing tape down his trousers.

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DAVID Warner has finally addressed the ball tampering scandal in a message directed to his supporters around the world.

"I think most importantly, I have incredibly fond memories of him and Dale Steyn at their best and they were a really formidable unit. They are hurting and I feel for them and their families", the former Australia batsman told the media.

Bancroft used a strip of yellow sticky tape he had covered with dirt granules to illegally scratch the rough side of the ball, in an attempt to generate more swing for Australia's bowlers.

"But the jump to hysteria is something that has elevated the offence beyond what they actually did, and maybe we're at a point where the punishment just might not fit the crime".

The reaction from Down Under was one of anger and it must be noted that Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull and Australian Sports Commission mounted pressure on the CA to act against the erring players.

Steve Smith is in the eye of the storm after the recent ball-tampering fiasco in Cape Town during the ongoing Test series against South Africa where few senior team members were involved.

Smith looked close to tears as he was bundled through the terminal by local police after an emotional few days, which culminated in him and David Warner receiving historic 12-month bans from playing at a national or global level.

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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