The 2018 ball-tampering fiasco landed three Australian cricketers – David Warner, Steve Smith, and Cameron Bancroft – in hot water, but Bancroft, the youngest of the bunch, has now said it’s “self-explanatory” if the bowlers in the Newlands Test against South Africa were aware of what was going on. About the fact that all three cricketers were given prolonged suspensions by Cricket Australia, no other player has confessed to knowing about the misdeeds on the day.
In an interview with The Guardian, Bancroft explained that because his conduct personally benefited the bowlers, their knowledge of ball-tampering is “self-explanatory.”
“Look, what I had to do was take responsibility and accountability for my own decisions and contributions. Yeah, clearly, what I did is beneficial to bowlers, and the knowledge around it is possibly self-evident “When asked if any of the bowlers were conscious of the techniques in use, Bancroft assured The Guardian that they were.
Bancroft was captured on camera using sandpaper to change the condition of the ball on day three of the third Test of the four-match series. Bancroft slipped the sandpaper inside his trousers after realising he’d been caught red-handed.
At a press conference after the day’s match, Bancroft and then-Australia captain Steve Smith revealed that Australia had prepared the transfer and that Warner, too, had advance knowledge of it. This drew vehement criticism from all quarters, but especially from Australia.
“Uh… well, well, I mean, well, I guess it’s pretty self-explanatory,” Bancroft said when asked again if the bowlers understood.
Bancroft claims to have benefited from the experience more than three years later.
He said that the strain of playing for Australia, as well as his desire to represent his country, caused him to lose sight of his principles.
“I over-invested to the point that I lost sight of my ideals. What had become important to me was being liked, being respected, and feeling very important to my teammates, as if by sandpapering a cricket ball, I was contributing something “he said
“That’s something I don’t think I really comprehended before that blunder. But it’s just part of the trip, and it’s a difficult lesson I had to remember.”