On Sky Sports’ Big Sports Breakfast, Michael Clarke said there is no need for any surprise to be expressed that more than 3 players knew about the ball tampering on field, in the Cape town Test 2018 that rocked Australian cricket.
The Test was played between Australia and South Africa, during which the trio – Steve Smith (Captain), David Warner (Vice Captain) and Cameron Bancroft (Opener) were found guilty for involvement in ball tampering by means of sand paper. The opener Cameron Bancroft was clearly seen using sand paper over the ball which was seen in the live coverage of the Test match.
Michael Clarke, the Former Australian Skipper turned commentator reveals that there certainly can’t be just the three of them in the team with the knowledge of the Ball tampering during the Sandpaper gate incident, in particular the bowlers
“They’ve got to hold the ball to bowl with it. I can tell you now if you went and grabbed a pen, just a pen and put a little ‘1’ somewhere on my cricket bat; on top of the handle, on the edge of the bat, on the toe of the bat, on the face, under the grip, anywhere, just a little number one, I would have noticed,” he said as quoted by ANI.
The 40 year old cricketer explains that Bowlers playing at international level is capable of detecting any changes with respect to ball and it is impossible to say that they did not have any knowledge with respect to the ball tampering but just bowled them. “If you are playing sport at the highest level you know your tools that good it’s not funny. Can you imagine that ball being thrown back to the bowler and the bowler not knowing about it? Please,” he added.
“What’s the surprise?” says Michael Clarke
Cameron Bancroft, who is currently in Durkham for playing county cricket, in his recent interview hinted that it was ‘Probably self-explanatory’ of the fact whether the bowlers had the knowledge of the ball being tampered during the Sandpaper Gate incident or not.
He answered Donald McRae, the interviewer of The Guardian on Friday that:“Yeah, look, all I wanted to do was to be responsible and accountable for my own actions and part. Yeah, obviously what I did benefits bowlers, and the awareness around that, probably, is self-explanatory.”
“I guess one thing I learnt through the journey and being responsible is that’s where the buck stops [with Bancroft himself]. Had I had better awareness I would have made a much better decision,” he added. When the 28 year old Australian Cricketer was further questioned regarding the knowledge of the bowlers, he replied: “Uh… yeah, look, I think, yeah, I think it’s pretty probably self-explanatory.
With respect to the statements made by Bancroft in the recent interview, Clarke commented: “I love how the articles in the paper are ‘it is such a big surprise that Cameron Bancroft has made a …’ Actually if you read his quotes it is not what he did say as what he didn’t say in regards to other people knowing about sandpaper gate.”
“What’s the surprise? That more than three people knew? I don’t think anybody who has played the game of cricket or knows a little bit about cricket would know that in a team like that, at the highest level, when the ball is such an important part of the game. I don’t think anybody is surprised that more than three people knew about it,” he added.
The Sandpaper gate incident was one of the darkest moments of Australian Cricket history and Cricket Australia took serious actions against the three player: Smith and Warner were removed from being captain and vice captain of the National team and was handed one year bans. Bancroft was sentenced to 9 months suspension. The Australian Cricket Board is to initiate the re-investigation of the Sandpaper gate incident too look for any other players who were aware of the fact that the ball was being tampered with.