Despite the great lengths Australian skipper Steve Smith has gone to in an attempt to convince all and sundry that the ball-tampering scandal that rocked the third Test against the Proteas at Newlands was the first time under his captaincy that cheating has taken place, shocking new evidence has emerged suggesting Smith may be lying, or at best, blissfully unaware.
According to the Wide World of Sports website, Cricket Australia (CA) was in damage control on Monday as the fallout continued from the Test in Cape Town – which was won by 322 runs by the Proteas – with Smith and opener Cameron Bancroft admitting they had deliberately cheated to gain an edge.
Television footage during Saturday’s Day 3 clearly showed Bancroft take an object out of his pocket during the post-lunch session and rub it on the ball.
Smith is reportedly on his way home to Australia after being banned by the ICC for the final Test at the Wanderers starting on Friday, March 30, but Bancroft is free to play, pending a Cricket Australia inquiry after being fined and handed three demerit points – one point short of a suspension.
But this appears not to be the first time Bancroft has been involved in a possible cheating scandal after footage emerged of him allegedly putting spoonfuls of sugar in his pocket during the recently concluded Ashes series.
While it’s not illegal to put sugar in one’s trouser pocket, fans will no doubt make up their own minds as to why anyone would feel the need to do so, mindful of course that current Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis was found guilty by the ICC of ball tampering against Australia in 2016 after rubbing a sugary lolly on the ball in Hobart.
Smith was the skipper in the Ashes series in late 2017/early 2018, which Australia won 4-0.[Source: News24]