Published: Thu, November 01, 2018
Sport | By Stuart Potter

Ball-tampering: Why it cut Australian cricket so deep

Ball-tampering: Why it cut Australian cricket so deep

The union rested the blame equally on CA and concluded the "new evidence" supplied by the Longstaff review was grounds enough to lift the year long bans for skipper Steve Smith and deputy David Warner and the nine month suspension dished out to Cameron Bancroft.

Smith and Warner are now serving 12-month bans for their roles in the scandal, ruling them out of representing Australia in any format until March next year and playing domestic cricket in Sheffield Shield and Big Bash League this summer.

"With this new information, common sense, common decency, basic fairness, proportionality, which we've talked about from the outset, and natural justice demand that the punishment is reduced". It is a mentality that players believed existed during the ball- tampering scandal in South Africa.

"There was a full investigation and that was the outcome of the investigation", Peever said. "We've got to start rebuilding the cricket team to start winning games for Australia and get a cricket team that Australia can be proud of".

A "win at all costs" culture was said to have infiltrated the game, culminating in the ball-tampering fiasco in South Africa in March.

However, despite all this, the majority of respondents backed CA's heavy sanctions to Smith, Warner and Bancroft.

"A constant complaint from players who contributed to this review is that they are treated as if they are assets of the game - commodities of variable value", the report said.

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Smith, Warner and Bancroft are the only players named in the report. "It's not our cricket team, it's Australia's cricket team, and I think for a little while, we lost that".

Earlier this year, there was a similar push for the duo's bans to be softened so they could play the second half of the Sheffield Shield season.

On-the-field sledging, which has been one of the major criticisms of the Australian team, was also inherent in the team's culture, with certain individuals asked to "play the mongrel".

"What he wants is not to get any false hope", Western Australia coach Adam Voges said of Bancroft, who is running yoga classes for WACA staff as he waits to return on December 29.

A spokesman for Cricket Australia said they expected a dialogue with the ACA once an official submission was made and they were open to engaging with the ACA in a positive manner. Yes, the reviews have shown problems ran deep at CA, but it was a collection of players who took sandpaper into the middle at Newlands.

CA has also been urged to conduct a major review of its high-performance unit - Howard is leaving next year - and encouraged to have anyone associated with the high-performance unit banned from taking part in industrial negotiations with players. There could have been more help but they certainly didn't just leave us hanging either. "And so the sanctions stand, as I said several weeks ago".

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