Steve Smith and David Warner were on Tuesday banned for 12 months by Cricket Australia following the ball-tampering scandal during the Cape Town Test against South Africa. Cameron Bancroft was also handed a nine-month ban. Smith and Warner have already stepped down from their IPL captaincy roles. Cricket Australia Chief Executive James Sutherland met the players at their hotel in Johannesburg’s Sandton district to tell them their fate before they flew back to Australia, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.
Earlier, Smith was slapped with one-match ban by the cricket governing body ICC and was also fined for breaching the code of conduct. His team-mate Cameron Bancroft, who was caught on camera tampering with the ball on the third day of the Newlands Test, also got 75 per cent fine and three demerit points.
After the incident, the Australian media came out all guns blazing against cricketers and slammed them for bringing disgrace and humiliation to the country.
Sutherland had already asked Smith and Warner to step down as captain and vice-captain respectively after the former admitted that Australia’s ‘leadership group’ orchestrated the plan.
Smith was handed full-time captaincy of the Australian cricket team after the team lost the Ashes 2-3 to England under the leadership of Michael Clarke.
Smith has led Australia in 34 Tests and took his team to victories on 18 occasions. Australia have lost 10 Tests and drew 6 under Smith’s leadership.
Warner, one of the best openers in the world, has represented Australia in 74 Tests, scoring 8540 runs at an average of 48.20, including 21 centuries and 29 fifties.
In 106 ODIs, Warner has scored 4343 runs at an average of 43.43, including 14 centuries and 17 fifties.