After a sheer pressure from Australian fans, the cricket fraternity and also the Prime Minister, Australia captain Steven Smith, vice-captain David Warner and opener Cameron Bancroft are heading back to their country from South Africa. They players are suspended from the fourth International test schedule in Johannesburg against the home team. Cricket Australia inducted Matt Renshaw, Glenn Maxwell and Joe Burns to replace the outgoing players. Tim Paine would lead the team in absence of Smith and Warner. The former will be selected to continue captainship, if in case Smith permanently stripped off the designation.
The decision to recall the three accused from the Test match was put to action after strong opinions from sponsor of the game apart from general fans. James Sutherland, head of Cricket Australia said that the judgement is made “in the best interest of the game”. He disclosed that only Smith, Warner and Cameron are being found guilty after thorough investigation. Therefore, the rest of the players would be playing the test schedule against South Africa.
Per Iain Roy, head of Integrity in CA, coach Darren Lehmann has no role in the fiasco. However, earlier Lehmann was caught on camera passing a message to Bancroft to hide the adhesive tape. It was also apparent that he sent Peter Handscomb to pass a message to prime accused Cameron Bancroft. Roy also disclosed that Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon were not involved. In contrast, David Warner’s statement suggested that there was wider awareness about the plot in the dressing room.
James Sutherland expressed that this incident will be considered as an opportunity to review the culture and conduct of Australia’s international teams. Alistair Nicholson, Chief Executive of Australian Cricketers Association said the players will provided with legal assistance. Per Nicholson, the players are “remorseful” for the mistakes they made. He added, ACA would be providing legal and welfare support to all players of team Australia.
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