Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft have admitted to ball tampering in the ongoing 3rd Test between South Africa and Australia in Cape Town.
The incident took place just before Tea when Bancroft was caught on camera, using yellow tape to roughen up the ball so as to make it reverse during South Africa’s second innings.
After being caught on camera, Bancroft tried to hide the tape in his crotch(which was also caught on camera), a move that was probably suggested to him by the Australian leadership group.
Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft addressed the media after the end of day’s play, admitting to using unfair means to get the ball to reverse.
“I had discussions with the match officials, I’ve been charged with attempting to change the condition of the ball” Bancroft said.
“We had a discussion during the break and I saw an opportunity to use some tape, get some granules from the rough patches on the wickets and change the condition, it didn’t work, the umpires didn’t change the ball. I was cited on the screen and that resulted in me shoving it down my trousers.” he added.
Steve Smith had an embarrassing look about him and conceded that the entire leadership group knew about it and the entire thing had been planned during Lunch.
“It was the leadership group’s idea. Poor choice and we deeply regret our actions. The coaches weren’t involved. It was purely the leadership group who came up with this. This is the first time it has happened under my leadership. We saw this game as such as an important game. We’ve seen the ball reversing through this series and this ball didn’t seem like it was going to go. It’s such poor actions. Deeply regrettable and wont happen again. I can promise you. I can promise you this is the first time it has happened.
“I am embarrassed. I know the boys in the shed are embarrassed as well. Being the leader I am incredibly sorry. If we weren’t caught, I would still regret it.” Smith said.
When asked if he would be looking to step down from captaincy, Smith said that he wanted to stay at the helm of things to deal with the entire fiasco.
“I wont consider stepping down [from captaincy]. I still think I am the right person for the job. Today was a big mistake on my part and on the leadership group as well. I have to take control of the ship. This is something I am not proud of. It’s something I hope I can learn from and come back from. I am embarrassed. It is a big error in judgement.”
Smith tried to use all euphemisms in the book to sugarcoat what should have crudely been referred to as ‘cheating’.
The ICC needs to be strict with their decision over the entire incident and above all that, Cricket Australia needs to be humiliated and needs to look into the way the ‘leaders’ of their team are functioning on the International stage.
A dark, dark day for cricket!