Australian cricket captain Smith sent home in disgrace, coach stays

The company, which signed a three-year agreement thought to be worth AUD$20 million (£11 million/$15.3 million/€12.4 million) with Cricket Australia in 2017, claimed the incident involving former captain Steve Smith, vice-captain David Warner and batsman Cameron Bancroft was "so inconsistent with our values".

Captain Steve Smith and vice-captain David Warner have been banned from worldwide cricket for a year and stripped of their leadership positions, with the latter branded "never to lead again" by Cricket Australia (CA).

Cricket Australia said Warner "instructed" young batsman Cameron Bancroft how to carry out the tampering on the field with a piece of sandpaper.

Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland was due to confirm the sanctions Wednesday night (AEST), less than eight hours after fronting a press conference to announce that the trio of Australian players would be sent home.

Wicketkeeper Tim Paine will take over the captaincy for the fourth and final Test starting in Johannesburg Friday, with hosts South Africa leading a bad-tempered series 2-1.

"In light of recent events, David Warner has stepped down as captain of Sunrisers Hyderabad".

Former captain Steve Smith's days as a Weet-Bix kid are also over, with Sanitarium dropping Smith from its endorsements. One can only hope that Lehmann and his boys would have learnt a bitter lesson and will play a different brand of cricket in the future.

For his part in the incident, Bancroft was handed a nine-month suspension from global and Australian domestic cricket.

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"This has caused damage to the game as a whole and certainly to Cricket Australia".

Warner was sensationally identified as the central figure in the ball-tampering fiasco in the findings of Cricket Australia's investigation into the Cape Town cheating saga. The ICC had taken a lenient view of the incident and both the players were just fined and banned from one Test. Cricket Pandits were however sure that they would not be let off lightly.

"We don't want it to seem like we are going after the Australian team", he said.

Bancroft was caught tampering with the ball red-handed on day three of the third Test when he was filmed first rubbing the ball with the tape in his hand, then shoving the tape down the front of his trousers.

Sutherland said: "The sanctions we have announced are significant for the individuals involved".

"I think most importantly, I have incredibly fond memories of him and Dale Steyn at their best and they were a really formidable unit".

All three have the right to appeal against their punishments - they would get a hearing from an independent commissioner - and have been offered support from the Australian Cricketers' Association should they choose to go down this road.

He was filmed not only rubbing the ball with the dirtied tape but also concealing the evidence down the front of his pants.

  • Lawrence Cooper