Smith banned for a year and stripped of Australia captaincy, Warner also gets 12 months

Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft will all contribute 100 hours of unpaid community work as part of their punishment, as it emerges sandpaper was used to scrub ball during Cape Town Test


Sam Morshead | 3/28/2018 at 9:26 AM

Steve Smith at Cape Town International Airport

Cricket Australia have suspended Steve Smith for 12 months for his role in the Aussie ball-tampering scandal.

Smith, who admitted his part in a scheme to scuff one side of the ball with sandpaper during the third Test against South Africa in Cape Town, has also been removed as captain of the national side, with Tim Paine taking on the position.

David Warner has also been handed a year-long suspension, while Cameron Bancroft - the batsman who was caught in the act by TV cameras at Newlands - will be ineligible for selection for nine months.

All three have been charged by Cricket Australia with a breach of the governing body's code of conduct. As part of their punishment they will all be required to partake in 100 hours of voluntary work in community cricket.

CA have confirmed that they are also to launch a review into the conduct of Australia's senior men's side in the aftermath of a tour which had been littered with examples of ill-discipline prior to events in Cape Town.

Smith and Warner's bans rule them out of any international or state cricket until next summer's World Cup in England and Wales, though they have the right to appeal via a code of behaviour hearing. The trio will be allowed to take part in grade cricket.


David Warner has been banned for a year

A Cricket Australia statement on Wednesday broke down the reasoning behind the suspensions.

It explained the reasons beyond ball-tampering which increased the length of the bans.

Smith was found to have attempted to mislead match officials and the public, through his choice of words in his press conference on Saturday.

The former captain was also charged with "knowledge of a plan to artificially alter the condition of the ball", though crucially it was Warner who was identified as the brains behind the scheme.

Warner was discovered to have been responsible for the "development" of the plan, "provision of advice to a junior player over how the condition of the ball could be artifically altered" and "demonstating how it could be done".

The CA investigation also found that it was Warner who instructed Bancroft to engage in the ball-tampering which was spotted by TV cameras at Newlands.

For his part, Bancroft was punished for "knowledge of and being party to" the plan, "carrying out instructions", "seeking to conceal evidence" and "seeking to mislead match officials".


- Knowledge of a plan to artificially alter the condition of the ball
- Failure to prevent the implementation of the plan
- Directing the concealment of evidence on the field of play
- Seeking to mislead match officials
- Misleading public comments
- Development of a plan to artificially alter the condition of the ball
- Instruction to a junior player to carry out the plan
- Advising a junior player over how to alter the condition of the ball
- Demonstrating how artifical alteration of the ball's condition could be achieved
- Failure to prevent the implementation of the plan
- Failure to report knowledge of the plan
- Misleading match officials
- Knowledge of and being party to the plan
- Carrying out instructions to artificially alter the condition of the ball
- Seeking to conceal evidence
- Seeking to mislead match officials
- Misleading public comments

Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland said in a statement: "The sanctions we have announced are significant for the individuals involved. That is why the process has had to be thorough to ensure that all relevant issues have been examined. 

"I am satisfied that the sanctions in this case properly reflect a balance between the need to protect the integrity and reputation of the game and the need to maintain the possibility of redemption for the individuals involved, all of whom have learned difficult lessons through these events."

As the sanctions were announced, the fallout to the incident continued apace.

Both Smith and Warner have lost lucrative IPL contracts - Smith with Rajasthan Royals and Warner with Sunrisers Hyderabad - after the BCCI barred them from playing in the 2018 competition.

Smith will not be considered for a return to the captaincy for at least two years, while Warner will never be placed in a position of elevated responsibility within the Australia national side again. Cricket Australia cited the abrasive opener's "lack of contrition" as a factor in that decision.

"Any consideration of future leadership would be conditional on acceptance by fans and the public, form and authority among the playing group," the CA statement read.

Smith left the Australian camp on Wednesday to fly home to Sydney, where he is expected to speak to reporters upon arrival.


Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland

Bancroft, meanwhile, is due to join Somerset for the County Championship in the English summer.

The club have been consistent in saying they would wait until the outcome of Cricket Australia's investigation before making a decision themselves.

The severity of the punishments dealt out by the governing body come after several days of intense criticism of the national team from media and the Australian public alike.

In a press conference on Tuesday evening, Sutherland felt compelled to apologise to the nation for the events which unfolded in Cape Town.

"I understand and share the anger and disappointment of Australia fans and the broader Australia community about the events in Cape Town," he said.

"On behalf of Cricket Australia I want to apologise to all Australians that these events have taken place, especially to all the kids who love cricket and idolise the players.

"I want to apologise to Cricket South Africa and South Africa fans.

"It's about whether Australians can feel proud of their players."

Sutherland cleared the remainder of the Test squad and head coach Darren Lehmann of any wrongdoing in relation to the ball-tampering scheme.

Reports on Monday suggested Lehmann was ready to stand down over the matter but Sutherland emphasised that the former Baggy Green international would remain in the role he has held since June 2013.



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