Mitchell Starc: The Australian fast bowler released an official statement on his website on behalf of the Australian bowling quartet.
Australian bowling quartet comprising of pacers Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc and spinner Nathan Lyon have joined hands to release an official statement distancing themselves from the ball tampering scandal of Cape Town Test in 2018.
The four bowlers’ joint statement has come on the back of former cricketers and journalists bringing up the matter again after Australia batsman Cameron Bancroft opening up on the bowlers’ “awareness” about the infamous incident.
“Yeah, look, all I wanted to do was to be responsible and accountable for my own actions and part. Yeah, obviously what I did benefits bowlers and the awareness around that, probably, is self-explanatory,” Bancroft was quoted as saying by The Guardian last week.
Former Australia wicket-keeper batsman Adam Gilchrist and former Australia captain Michael Clarke were among the many renowned voices which expressed their views on the matter. While Gilchrist talked about the lack of reverse swing in cricket since the incident, Clarke admitted to not be surprised by knowing that the bowlers were aware about all that was happening.
Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood and Nathan Lyon release official statement
In their attempt to put an end to numerous speculations, Cummins, Hazlewood, Starc and Lyon expressed disappointment regarding the questioning of their integrity even three years after the Cape Town Test.
“We did not know a foreign substance was taken onto the field to alter the condition of the ball until we saw the images on the big screen at Newlands,” read a part of their statement.
“And to those who, despite the absence of evidence, insist that ‘we must have known’ about the use of a foreign substance simply because we are bowlers, we say this: The umpires during that Test match, Nigel Llong and Richard Illingworth, both very respected and experienced umpires, inspected the ball after the images surfaced on the TV coverage and did not change it because there was no sign of damage,” the four bowlers wrote further.
While each one of them acknowledged whatever happened was “wrong”, they requested everyone to end the “rumour-mongering and innuendo (derogatory remark or hint)” and move on. You can read the complete statement by clicking here.