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Is this the moment Australia cheated against England in the ASHES?

In the aftermath of Cameron Bancroft’s blatant ball-tampering in South Africa, a video has surfaced appearing to show him cheating again against England. 

The batsman was picked up on TV coverage in January seemingly pouring sugar into his pocket before taking to the field at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) in the fifth and final test match.  

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Players are barred, by Law 42.3, from rubbing the ball on the ground, interfering with its seam or surface, or using any implement that can alter the condition of the ball to thereby gain unfair advantage.

In the past, players have been fined and banned by the authorities for using sweets or mints to get a better shine on the ball – and Bancroft, who was only playing his fifth Test in Sydney, could have used the sugar to do the same.    

Australia’s captain Steve Smith and vice captain David Warner have been stripped of their roles after Bancroft was seen using tape to tamper with the ball on the fourth day of the third Test in Cape Town yesterday.

Cameron Bancroft appearing to pour sugar into his hand and then into his pocket before taking the field at the Sydney Cricket Ground in January against England

He was seen running his hand over the ball, before removing a yellow object from his pocket

The Australia player was then spotted putting the object down the front of his trousers

The opening batsman was seen running his hand over the ball, before removing a yellow object from his pocket and placing it down the front of his trousers

Batsman Cameron Bancroft was caught tampering with ball against South Africa on Saturday

Batsman Cameron Bancroft was caught tampering with ball against South Africa on Saturday

Cricket teams usually appoint a non-bowling fielder to take responsibility for shining the ball. 

It is done with the aim of keeping one side of the ball smooth and shiny while the other side of the ball scuffs up with the general wear and tear of the game.

This alters the aerodynamics of the ball and makes it swing through the air when released by seam bowlers – giving the fielding team an advantage. 

It is perfectly legal to use saliva or sweat to shine up the ball, but it is illegal to deliberately rough up the other side of the ball or use synthetic substances to aid with the shining. 

MailOnline has contacted Cricket Australia regarding the clip of Bancroft which was filmed when Australia had an unassailable 3-0 lead over England in the Test series.   

They went on to win the Sydney test by an innings and 123 runs, dealing England a humiliating defeat Down Under. 

During the series, the Australians accused England bowler James Anderson of ball-tampering. 

They claimed he was digging his thumbnail into the ball, but these were never substantiated and footage proved the Lancashire man was innocent.  

Australia's Cameron Bancroft has found himself at the centre of ball-tampering controversy

Australia’s Cameron Bancroft has found himself at the centre of ball-tampering controversy

The new footage, which was captured on BT Sport, will heap pressure on Bancroft, who was told by his captain to cheat against South Africa. 

In a sheepish press conference after the day’s play, Steve Smith admitted it was he and his so-called leadership group who hatched the plan to tamper with the ball.

Bancroft, who with only seven tests under his belt, is unlikely to have formed part of that hierarchy. 

Although Smith was careful not to name any of his players, the group is likely to have been made up of the most experienced members of the team – David Warner, Nathan Lyon, Mitchel Starc and the stand-in skipper Tim Paine. 

Warner has been criticised for his liberal use of strapping when he is in the field.

Close-ups show the fiery opening batsman’s hands covered in tape and a thick piece of padding over his index finger.

While the rest of his fingernails have been cut short, he has a long fingernail on his little finger.

Critics say the abrasive strapping could be used to rough up the ball and the fingernail could be used to pick at or dig into the ball.

Steve Smith (left) and David Warner (right) have been removed as captain and vice-captain of the Australian cricket team

Steve Smith (left) and David Warner (right) have been removed as captain and vice-captain of the Australian cricket team

Cricket Australia made the announcement about Smith ahead of the fourth day's play in Cape Town on Sunday

Cricket Australia made the announcement about Smith ahead of the fourth day’s play in Cape Town on Sunday

Cricket Australia made the announcement that Smith and Warner had been stripped of their roles ahead of the fourth day’s play at the third Test in Cape Town on Sunday.

Tim Paine has been named as the acting captain following the decision after Smith and Warner ‘agreed to stand down’. 

Cricket Australia called an emergency meeting to decide Smith’s future after Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull added his voice to the furious chorus demanding the skipper be stood down.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said the incident was wrong and called for decisive action from Cricket Australia

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said the incident was wrong and called for decisive action from Cricket Australia

Cricket Australia chief executive, James Sutherland said: ‘Following discussions with Steve Smith and David Warner they have agreed to stand down as captain and vice-captain respectively for the remainder of this Test match.

‘This Test match needs to proceed, and in the interim we will continue to investigate this matter with the urgency that it demands.

‘As I said earlier today, Cricket Australia and Australian cricket fans expect certain standards of conduct from cricketers representing our country, and on this occasion these standards have not been met.

‘All Australians, like us, want answers and we will keep you updated on our findings, as a matter of priority.’

Warner (left) and Smith (right) are both on the field for Australia against South Africa

Warner (left) and Smith (right) are both on the field for Australia against South Africa

David Peever, the chairman of Cricket Australia, said Tim Paine had been selected as the stand-in to replace Smith for the rest of the match in Cape Town. 

‘Both Steve and David will take to the field today under Tim’s captaincy,’ Mr Peever said.

‘The Board fully supports the process for an immediate investigation into what occurred in Cape Town.

‘We regard this as a matter of the utmost seriousness and urgency. We will ensure we have all information available to make the right decisions for Australian Cricket.’

Turnbull was flooded with ‘shock and bitter disappointment’ upon hearing the Australian cricket team were caught ball tampering in South Africa with batsman Cameron Bancroft using dirt stuck to a piece of tape.

Steve Smith (right) faced the media on Saturday night but has been removed as captain ahead of the fourth day in Cape Town

Steve Smith (right) faced the media on Saturday night but has been removed as captain ahead of the fourth day in Cape Town

Speaking about the incident which has thrown Australian cricket into to chaos, the prime minister said: ‘It seemed completely beyond belief that the Australian cricket team had been involved in cheating.’

He said the news beggared belief with the players role models for millions around the country.

‘The whole nation who holds those who wear the baggy green up on a pedestal — about as high as you can get in Australia, higher than any politician that’s for sure — this is a shocking disappointment. 

‘It’s wrong and I look forward to Cricket Australia taking decisive action soon,’ he said.

Australian cricket is a laughing stock after Cameron Bancroft insisted that he was in the wrong place at the wrong time when he was caught

Australian cricket is a laughing stock after Cameron Bancroft insisted that he was in the wrong place at the wrong time when he was caught

Mr Turnbull said he had been in contact with the Cricket Australia chairman David Peever to express his disappointment ‘clearly and unequivocally’. 

The Australian Sports Commission has called on Smith to be removed as captain.

In a statement, the government body which funds sport in Australia, said it condemns cheating and expects Australian athletes to ‘demonstrate unimpeachable integrity in representing our country’.

‘The Australian cricket team are iconic representatives of our country,’ the statement from chairman John Wylie and chief executive Kate Palmer said.

‘The example they set matters a great deal to Australia and to the thousands of young Australians playing or enjoying the sport of cricket and who look up to the national team as role models.

Adam Gilchrist branded Australia a 'laughing stock of the world' after the incident in South Africa

Adam Gilchrist branded Australia a ‘laughing stock of the world’ after the incident in South Africa

Shane Warne said during coverage of the Test match on Fox Sports that 'you just can't do that', adding: 'I don't care who you are.'

Shane Warne said during coverage of the Test match on Fox Sports that ‘you just can’t do that’, adding: ‘I don’t care who you are.’

‘Given the admission by Australian captain Steve Smith, the ASC calls for him to be stood down immediately by Cricket Australia, along with any other members of the team leadership group or coaching staff who had prior awareness of, or involvement in, the plan to tamper with the ball.

‘This can occur while Cricket Australia completes a full investigation.’

A host of cricket legends have called for Australian captain Steve Smith to be sacked as skipper after he admitted the leadership had hatched a plan to cheat.

Adam Gilchrist branded Australia a ‘laughing stock of the world’ after Bancroft was caught on camera pulling sticky tape from his pocket and rubbing it on the ball to illegally gain an advantage.

Shane Warne said during coverage of the Test match on Fox Sports that ‘you just can’t do that’, adding: ‘I don’t care who you are.’

He later tweeted: ‘Very disappointed with the pictures I saw on our coverage here in Cape Town.

‘If proven the alleged ball tampering is what we all think it is – then I hope Steve Smith and Darren Lehmann do the press conference to clean this mess up.’

Bancroft was spoken to by English umpires Nigel Llong and Richard Illingworth on Saturday

Bancroft was spoken to by English umpires Nigel Llong and Richard Illingworth on Saturday

Former Australian batsman Simon Katich said Cricket Australia had ‘no choice’ but to sack Smith, vice-captain David Warner and coach Darren Lehmann. 

‘This was premeditated and calculated at the break and those guys are in charge of Cameron Bancroft behaving the way he did,’ he said on SEN Radio. 

‘It’s a bigger problem than that, he’s been instructed to do this and anyone in cricket knows the captain and coach are in control of what happens in the team.

‘I love Steve Smith but unfortunately he’s made a serious error and I think it’s going to cost him the captaincy of Australia.’

Gilchrist is due to appear on The Project on Sunday night but said on Channel 10 earlier in the day it was ‘black and white’.

‘Australian cricket now and the integrity of Australian cricket is the laughing stock of world sport,’ he said.

‘We’re very quick to damn nations that cheat in any way or go beyond the rules. 

Bancroft admitted he had panicked when he was sighted on the screens in the stadium

Bancroft admitted he had panicked when he was sighted on the screens in the stadium

‘This clearly is against the laws of the game and we’ve just had our national captain admit they sat down, premeditated, pre-planned a way to cheat.’ 

Former captain Allan Border was among scores of outraged cricket legends.

Discussing the possibility of Smith being sacked, he wrote in his Fox Sports Australia column: ‘If the ICC and the Australian board decides that Steve Smith is free to play in the fourth Test, I would be comfortable with that.

‘But equally, if he has to pay a penalty for his leadership in going down this path I’d be just as comfortable.’ 

He added: It’s hard to explain your emotions when it comes to seeing the Australian team doing something like this – you just feel embarrassed and disappointed.’

England fans demonstrated the point made by Gilchrist and have already created a new song – despite their side being bowled out for just 58 on Thursday in their match against New Zealand in Auckland.

England fans are revelling in the controversy currently shrouding the Australian cricket team

England fans are revelling in the controversy currently shrouding the Australian cricket team

The Barmy Army posted the lyrics on Facebook: ‘Steve Smith is an Aussie. He wears a baggy cap. And when he saw some sticky tape. He said I’m having that. He gave it Cameron Bancroft. Who rubbed it on the ball. Those cheating Aussie convicts. They’ll never change at all!’ 

In a press conference after play on Saturday, Smith admitted that he and senior players planned the ball-tampering at lunch on day three but said he won’t be stepping down as captain.

Millions of Australians woke up on Sunday to headlines they could scarcely believe as fans quickly bayed for blood, demanding ‘sack the lot of them.’

'The leadership group knew about it', Smith (right) admitted following Saturday's action

‘The leadership group knew about it’, Smith (right) admitted following Saturday’s action

Bancroft and Steve Smith admitted that ball tampering had taken place during the action

 

Former Australia captain Michael Clarke was among scores of outraged cricket legends who expressed their shock on Sunday morning.

Former Australia captain Michael Clarke was among scores of outraged cricket legends who expressed their shock on Sunday morning.

Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland was on the verge of tears as he told reporters at a press conference on Sunday morning: ‘This is a sad day for Australian Cricket.’

He has sent the head of integrity and head of team performance out to South Africa to investigate and said he will not decide on sacking any players until he has seen their report. 

Another former captain, Michael Clarke called the cheating ‘blatant’ and ‘disrespectful’ during an interview on Nine News on Sunday morning in which he also refused to rule out a return as team captain, saying: ‘If I was asked by the right people, then I would think about my answer.’ 

He said: ‘I am pretty emotional about it all, to be honest. It is going to be quite hard for me to talk about. I think I have no doubt in my mind Steve Smith will be sitting in his hotel room right now in tears. 

'I have no doubt in my mind that every past Australian cricketer will be absolutely shattered with what we found out this morning,' said Clarke

‘I have no doubt in my mind that every past Australian cricketer will be absolutely shattered with what we found out this morning,’ said Clarke

Clarke called the cheating 'blatant' and 'disrespectful' during an interview on Nine News today

Clarke called the cheating ‘blatant’ and ‘disrespectful’ during an interview on Nine News today

Former Australia captain Michael Clarke has said Steve Smith 'will be sitting in his hotel room right now in tears' after the national cricket team was caught cheating against South Africa

Former Australia captain Michael Clarke has said Steve Smith ‘will be sitting in his hotel room right now in tears’ after the national cricket team was caught cheating against South Africa

‘I have no doubt in my mind that every past Australian cricketer will be absolutely shattered with what we found out this morning.’ 

He savaged Smith for apparently asking 25-year-old Bancroft to cheat, saying: ‘This is his eighth test match. I can’t believe if the leadership group has made a decision to do this, that they have gone and got the young kid who is playing his eighth test match to do that.

‘As a leader, you can’t ask somebody to do something you are not willing to do something you are not willing to do yourself.’   

Former England captain Michael Vaughan led chorus of condemnation and criticism from other ex-players.

‘Steve Smith,his Team & ALL the management will have to accept that whatever happens in their careers they will all be known for trying to CHEAT the game,’ Vaughan tweeted.

The four-Test series between Australia and South Africa has been marred by a handful of ugly controversies, starting with a staircase clash between David Warner and Quinton de Kock.

Millions of Australians woke up on Sunday to headlines they could scarcely believe as fans quickly bayed for blood, demanding 'sack the lot of them.'

Millions of Australians woke up on Sunday to headlines they could scarcely believe as fans quickly bayed for blood, demanding ‘sack the lot of them.’

‘It’s a sad day for Australian cricket’: CEO James Sutherland’s full statement on the cheating scandal 

Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland was on the verge of tears as he told reporters at a press conference on Sunday morning: ‘This is a sad day for Australian Cricket.’

He has sent the head of integrity and head of team performance out to South Africa to investigate and said he will not decide on sacking any players until he has seen their report. Here is his full statement:

Thanks for joining us. Just wanted to say at the outset that I was extremely disappointed and shocked to hear the news and read the news this morning after the events in Cape Town yesterday.

From a Cricket Australia perspective we regard this as a extremely serious issue and in a moment I will go into steps that will be put in place to understand more about it. Australian cricket fans want to be proud of their cricket team, they want to be proud of the Australian cricket team. 

Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland was on the verge of tears as he told reporters at a press conference on Sunday morning: ‘This is a sad day for Australian Cricket.’

'I was extremely disappointed and shocked to hear the news and read the news this morning after the events in Cape Town yesterday,' said Sutherland

‘I was extremely disappointed and shocked to hear the news and read the news this morning after the events in Cape Town yesterday,’ said Sutherland

And I think this morning they have every reason to wake up and not be proud of the team. It’s a very sad day for Australian cricket. One of the unique things about the game of cricket is that it’s to be played not only within the laws of the game but in the spirit of the game.

And activities on the field yesterday in Cape Town are neither within the laws of the game or within the laws of the game or within the spirit of the game. And for us at Cricket Australia that’s extremely disappointing, but more importantly for Australian cricket fans it’s extremely disappointing as well. 

Cameron Bancroft was charged under the ICC code of conduct, and accepted that charge and penalty that came with it. And after the game he and Steve Smith spoke about that matter. Unfortunately that’s not the end of it and can’t be the end of it.

We have a responsibility to take this further and to understand more about the issue. And we will over the next couple of days get a deep understanding of what happened and why, and to that end I have asked our head of integrity Ian Roy to travel to South Africa today.

He has sent the head of integrity and head of team performance out to South Africa to investigate and said he will not decide on sacking any players until he has seen their report

Pat Howard, head of team performance will also go with him, and they will also go with him, and they will be on the ground in South Africa tomorrow. Ian’s brief will be to gather the relevant information that we need to address this matter and to understand it better. 

Understand that’s not necessarily the fullness of response that everyone is looking for right now, but you will appreciate that there is an element of process that needs to be undertaken here and you will understand that by appointing our head of integrity to this project it is being dealt with as a matter of urgency and seriousness. 

It will be dealt with promptly, we will work very hard over the next couple of days to get to the bottom of it, to understand the big picture, to understand the detail and to be making further comment on that in due course. 

Again, I just want to repeat two things – one is we are extremely disappointed and shocked at what we woke up to this morning and, secondly, we are dealing with this issue with the up most urgency and seriousness. Thanks

 

 



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