Published: Wed, March 28, 2018
Sports | By Jonathan Ford

Smith, Warner banned for 12 months by Cricket Australia

Smith, Warner banned for 12 months by Cricket Australia

Steve Smith and David Warner both have been handed 12-month bans, while Cameron Bancroft has been banned for nine months.

Captain Steve Smith, vice captain David Warner and batsman Cameron Bancroft will fly back in the next 24 hours and face "significant sanctions", the country's cricket chief James Sutherland told a news conference.

"I understand and share the anger and disappointment of Australian fans", Cricket Australia chief James Sutherland said at a press conference in Johannesburg.

Cricket Australia's other sponsors, which include KFC, XXXX Gold, Bupa, Qantas, Gillette and Toyota, have said they would wait for the results of Cricket Australia's investigation before deciding whether to alter any commercial deals.

"The players involved have officially been reported for breaching Cricket Australia's code of conduct under article 2.3.5.", Sutherland was also quoted to have said.

Wicketkeeper Paine, who took over the captaincy from Smith mid-match as the scandal unfolded during the tourists' heavy defeat in Cape Town, has been appointed as Test captain while head coach Darren Lehmann will keep his job after being cleared of any involvement.

In the aftermath of the ball-tampering scandal, Smith admitted the "leadership group" had chose to try and alter the state of the ball.

The Aussie team have copped it from the cricketing world following their participation in Australia's worst act on the cricket field since Trevor Chappell's underarm bowling incident of 1981. "Like many, I am deeply troubled by the events in Cape Town this last week and acknowledge the thousands of messages I have received, mostly from heartbroken cricket followers worldwide", Waugh said today.

One of the key findings of the CA investigation was that sandpaper was used on the ball, which runs contrary to what Smith and Bancroft told reporters on Saturday.

Shannon O'Connell is a junior coach and his sons Riley and Aidan both play at the Valley District Cricket Club in Brisbane, where the likes of former global captains Allan Border and Kepler Wessels were registered and where Australia coach Darren Lehmann has a family connection.

Social media slammed him for his equivocation and Australia's Foreign Minister Julie Bishop, one of series of politicians up to and including the Prime Minister to have commented on the matter, showed no such reticence.

Pietersen does not believe Lehmann was not aware of the ball-tampering plot and has expressed a belief that others were involved besides the their players.

Angry and with his voice trembling at times, Australia's cricket chief announced Tuesday that team captain Steve Smith and two other players who plotted to cheat in a test in South Africa face "serious sanctions", which could end the global career of at least one of them.

Bancroft was the man tasked with tampering with the ball with a piece of yellow adhesive tape and some dirt gathered from the pitch during the third day of the third test against South Africa in Cape Town.

The decision of the CA board and Sutherland completes Smith's stunning fall from grace from golden boy to one of the masterminds of one of Australian cricket's lowest ever moments - and all in the space of four days.

He tweeted on Wednesday: "I've woken up this morning actually gutted for Smith, Warner & Bancroft".

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