Australia investigating ball tampering incident

Steve Smith to remain captain as Cricket Australia’s investigation is underway in the ball-tampering incident after Smith and opener Cameron Bancroft confessed to ball-tampering against South Africa

Picture courtesy: Twitter
Picture courtesy: Twitter

NH Web Desk

In the on-going test match against South Africa, the Australian team finds itself in the middle of a scathing controvesy after the big screen on the ground and broadcasters world wide showed live fotages of young opener Cameron Bancroft tampering the ball in order to extract reverse swing.

Australian captain Steven Smith and Bancroft have confessed of using yellow tape to pick up rough granules from the pitch and rub them on the rough side of the ball in a bid to aid reverse swing. Iain Roy, Cricketr Austalia's Head of Integrity, and Pat Howard, CA's Head of Team Performance, are headed to South Africa to investigate the incident after the astounding revelations on day three of the third Test against South Africa.

However, Smith will remain as the leader of the Australian squad until the investigations are complete, Cricket Australia said.

The video of Bancroft discreetly using the tape to alter the ball's condition is played on the giant screen, which prompts him to pull out the tape from his pocket and slip it inside his trouser. This too is caught on camera. Smith confessed that it was a “leadership decision”.

"I was extremely disappointed and shocked to hear the news and read the news this morning," Cricbuzz quoted Sutherland as saying, choking back tears. "We regard this as an extremely serious issue. Australian cricket fans want to be proud of their cricket team they have every reason to wake up and not be proud of the Australian cricket team."

Former Australian captain, Michael Clarke called the event disgraceful. "It's premeditated cheating. It's blatant cheating, it's disgraceful, it's not accepted by anyone. Particularly in Australia, we have the best bowling attack in the world... wouldn't need to cheat to beat anybody," he told Channel Nine on Sunday.

Michael Vaughan, former England captain said in a tweet, “ Steve Smith, his Team & ALL the management will have to accept that whatever happens in their careers they will all be known for trying to CHEAT the game ...”

Vaughan also demanded a change of leadership, saying, “ The more you think about what has happened in Cape Town the more I realise the Leadership needs to be replaced ... Positions are untenable ... & I say that with the utmost respect for most of that group ...”

Renowned author, Daniel Brettig too condemned the incedent, saying, “the Australians cheated, knowingly and collectively, in an attempt to change the momentum of a match they were losing.”

Cricbuzz reported; according to a stat from CricViz, however, between overs 15 and 25, Australia find 0.5 degree of swing. Post the 25th over, this exaggerates to 1.5 degrees of swing.

Steve Smith, after confessing said, “it won’t happen in my leadership again.”

Here are more reactions to the incident dubbed as ‘Sandpaper Gate’

Watch the full video of the Australian team tampering the ball

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Published: 25 Mar 2018, 10:58 AM