Smith, Warner banned for one year; Bancroft for nine months
Cricket Australia have banned both Steven Smith and David Warner for a period of one year for leading the way in the ball-tampering scandal during the Cape Town Test against South Africa. Smith, who has been sacked as captain, will be facing the media for the first time since his public confession of the offense alongside Cameron Bancroft once he arrives in Sydney. Smith and Warner have also been banned from captaining Australia for the next two years.
As far as their IPL commitments are concerned, with both Smith and Warner having already resigned as captains of their respective franchises, with reports emerging that the former has canceled his contract with the Rajasthan Royals while the latter would be a part of the tournament for the Sunrisers Hyderabad, but as a player only. However, Bancroft has been handed over a nine-month ban for rubbing the ball with sandpaper.
At the same time, a BCCI official, while speaking to CricketNext, had made it clear that the Indian board would not allow the duo from participating in the eleventh edition of the IPL if they are banned by their home board, irrespective of the period.
Following public confessions of attempting to alter the condition of the ball by Smith and Bancroft in order to obtain early reverse-swing, the first sanction arrived from the ICC, which ruled Smith out of the fourth Test at Johannesburg and docked his entire match fee. But Bancroft escaped with a 75% fine and three demerit points after being caught on camera trying to use sandpaper on one side of the ball, something which was informed to him by the 12th man Peter Handscomb, who had had discussions with coach Darren Lehmann over walkie-talkie when footage of Bancroft's offence was shown on the giant screen at Cape Town.
Yesterday, it was the turn of the CA CEO James Sutherland to announce their own punishments with all three of Smith, Warner, and Bancroft being sent back home while Lehmann was let off, as Tim Paine was made Australia's Test captain, at least temporarily.
More to follow...