Cricket Australia (CA), on Tuesday, confirmed the bans imposed on Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft would not be shortened.
Australia will have to take on India at home without their banned trio – Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron as Cricket Australia has rejected the submission by the Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) that the bans handed to the players should be reduced.
Smith and Warner along Cameron Bancroft are currently serving bans for their involvement in the ball-tampering scandal during the third Test against South Africa in Cape Town in March this year.
In the wake of the scandal, Cricket Australia had slapped lengthy bans on the trio. While Smith and Warner received one-year ban each, Bancroft was docked with a nine-month suspension. Smith also had to give up his captaincy. The trio was banned from playing international and first-class cricket for their states.
However, recently the ACA submitted a plea to the cricket board to consider the bans. The ACA’s claim was further bolstered by the Longstaff review that squared the blame for the ball-tampering saga on the ‘win without counting costs’ culture created by Cricket Australia.
But the board has now confirmed it would not relax the bans on the trio.
CA interim chairman Earl Eddings said: “The Cricket Australia Board has carefully considered all elements of the ACA submission and has determined that it is not appropriate to make any changes to the sanctions handed down to the three players.
“The original decision of the Board to sanction the players was determined after rigorous discussion and consideration. CA maintains that both the length and nature of the sanctions remain an appropriate response in light of the considerable impact on the reputation of Australian cricket, here and abroad.
“Steve, David and Cameron are working hard to demonstrate their commitment to cricket and have our continued support to ensure their pathway to return is as smooth as possible.
“We believe the ongoing conversation about reducing the sanctions puts undue pressure on the three players – all of whom accepted the sanctions earlier this year – and the Australian men’s cricket team. As such, the Cricket Australia Board doesn’t intend to consider further calls for amendments to the sanctions.
“Though we recognise that this decision will be disappointing for the ACA, we thank them for their submission. Our commitment to continue building a strong relationship between CA and the ACA in the interests of cricket in Australia remains and we look forward to meeting with them shortly to that end.”
Warner and Smith’s ban will end on March 29 while Bancroft’s ban will come to an end this month.
Meanwhile, CA had allowed the forbidden trio to play grade cricket. As a result, Smith, and Warner made their return to field through the inaugural Global T20 Canada league. The duo also played in the Caribbean Premier League. Bancroft, on the other hand, made his return through the NT Strike League in Darwin.