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Steve Smith, David Warner, Cameron Bancroft Sent Home, James Sutherland Presser, Highlights: As it Happened

Cricketnext Staff | March 28, 2018, 8:42 AM IST

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23:07 (IST)

That's the end of James Sutherland's Press Conference at Johannesburg. From the looks of it, he is as distraught as Steve Smith and the murkiness of the matter is yet to unfold in it's full capacity. 

23:05 (IST)

Sutherland: The spirit of cricket is extremely important and it is the duty of every player to uphold the spirit of the game. The captain has more responsibility but that has to be upheld. 

Sutherland: The response from the public is not terribly surprising. It's a reminder of how important the game is to Australian fans

23:03 (IST)

Sutherland: I have not met with all the three players as yet, but I have spoken to Steve Smith and he is completely distraught at this point in time.

23:02 (IST)

Sutherland: The sport of cricket is meant to inspire kids to take up the sport and idolise the players. But if that hasn't happened then it is a sorry state of affairs and that needs to change. We are not comfortable with what has happened. We are probing the matter and sanctions will be imposed within the next 24 hours. 

22:58 (IST)

Sutherland: The feeling from Iain Roy is that this is an isolated incident. We hope that is the case, and would not like to go into details as yet. At the end of the day the fans have to proud of the Aus team. It is our responsibility towards the fans. 

22:56 (IST)

Sutherland: This is a reminder to us of how Australian cricket fans want their cricket players to behave. They want to be proud. This situation is extraordinarily bad for Australian cricket. I am angry, and this is not a good day for Australian cricket.  

22:55 (IST)

Sutherland: Cricket Australia are contemplating "significant sanctions" for players. But urgency must be balanced with due process and we will be in a better position with regards to that after 24 hours. We can't go into details because the probe is still on. 

22:54 (IST)

Sutherland: All Australian players have to show conduct and discipline. Winning is important but it cannot be done at the cost of the rules. 

22:53 (IST)

Sutherland: Matthew Renshaw, Joe Burns and Glenn Maxwell will replace the three players charged in the Test squad. 

22:52 (IST)

Sutherland: Given the circumstances, the team in the final Test match will be led by Tim Paine. 

22:52 (IST)

James Sutherland: The three players have been reported from their act. Once the investigation is completed in the next 24 hours, the sanctions will be announced accordingly. All three, Warner, Smith and Bancroft will be sent back to Australia on Wednesday. The replacements will come in within 24 hours. 

22:50 (IST)

James Sutherland: Preliminary findings of the probe are out, though the probe isn't over. The findings are - Prior knowledge was with David Warner, Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft only. No one knew about the plan other than these three. Darren Lehmann was not in the know how and will continue as the coach of the team. 

22:49 (IST)

James Sutherland: On behalf of Cricket Australia, I apologise to all Australians, particularly the youngsters who love and admire the game and look up to the stars. I would like to also apologise to Cricket South Africa for how the series has panned out. 

22:47 (IST)

Here we go, James Sutherland has arrived and is all set to address the media at Joburg

22:29 (IST)

This is what senior Australian cricket writer Peter Lalor believes will happen after the much awaited press conference -  They will face disciplinary when they get back. This press conf will be half an hour, we expect those guys to be sent home, they have been charged and are not able to play. When they get home they will go to code of conduct hearing. They will find out their fate. It's not going to be pretty for anyone. There have been splits in the team before, they can act any way they want, there is terrible strain in the group. Smith is struggling, Bancroft is not holding up well, Warner is in a bunker. The best thing that can happen is that the 3 of them go home. The others get on with the job. For the first time in history, Australia are going to show up, people on the team have admitted that to me. In these circumstances the game has been a second thought.

22:24 (IST)
22:11 (IST)

The Sydney Morning Herald believes that David Warner is the chief conspirator for this ball tampering saga, and what adds a bit of spice on that exact bit is that when during the lunch break at Newlands on Day 3 of the third Test, Quinton de Kock was toying with the Australians. Did Warner's clash with de Kock from earlier in the series have anything to do with this incident, as a motivating factor to dismiss the batsman and keep the Aussies afloat? 

22:06 (IST)
21:50 (IST)

Reports in The Guardian suggest, the alleged 'Leadership Group' of the Australian team who were involved in this matter are in fact none other than David Warner and Steve Smith. The three bowlers who bring balance to the Group on other days are Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Nathan Lyon - all of whom are enraged since they had no idea about a plan like this. 

21:47 (IST)
21:47 (IST)

Of course along with the players, the other big name involved in this matter is the coach Darren Lehman who took over the team in 2013 once Mickey Arthur was sacked as Australia coach. Currently, Lehmann is understandably not in the frame of mind to answer questions. He avoided the media once the team landed at the Joburg airport. 

21:44 (IST)
21:43 (IST)

Hello and Welcome to the live blog for Cricket Australia's James Sutherland's Press Conference which is expected to begin in Johannesburg in less than an hour from now. Stay tuned for all the live updates on the ball-tampering saga that has rocked the very foundation of Australian cricket. In the dock in the matter currently are Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft. 

Steve Smith, David Warner, Cameron Bancroft Sent Home, James Sutherland Presser, Highlights: As it Happened

Preview: Cricket Australia's CEO James Sutherland will address the media about the findings of their investigation on the latest ball-tampering saga that has engulfed the Australian team on their tour of South Africa. The investigation pertaining to the ball tampering scandal kicked off on Monday as some of the players and support staff were interviewed by Cricket Australia officials. According to, CA Head of Integrity Iain Roy was given the responsibility of carrying out the investigation at the team hotel. Before the proceedings started, the players talked to Australian Cricketers’ Association chief executive Alister Nicholson.

Australian players are believed to want teammate David Warner to be removed from the team hotel to avoid a scuffle after the Australian opener was reportedly partying with friends as the team continue to face the fallout effect of the ball tampering scandal.

Warner has also removed himself from a WhatsApp group comprising of Australian players, with one source saying he has ‘gone rogue’ since news of the ball tampering saga broke. He is expected to face heavy punishment which might result in a heavy ban, he is expected to miss the fourth Test starting on Friday.

According to reports in The Guardian on Monday, Steve Smith and David Warner could be banned from representing his country for a year. In a press release issued on Monday, CA informed that the findings of the investigation will be known by Wednesday. The move of Sutherland going to South Africa indicates that CA is planning harsher penalties on its players. Steve Smith, after the incident has already been banned for one Test, while Bancroft has been fined 75 percent of his match fees by the International Cricket Council, whilst David Warner escaped without any punishment.

Whilst the probe was on, former South African pacer Fanie De Villiers who was at Newlands as a television commentator and was trying to understand how the Australians were able to get reverse swing on a grassy field with a ball which was still relatively new. De Villiers told Australian radio station RSN927 that he had tipped off the camera crew that caught Cameron Bancroft rubbing the ball with a piece of yellow tape which the batsman then tried to conceal. "I said earlier that if they could get reverse swing in the 26th, 27th, 28th over, then they are doing something different from what everyone else does." According to De Villiers, it took the cameramen an hour and a half of searching before they caught Bancroft in the act.

"We actually said to our cameramen: 'Go out. Have a look, boys. They are using something.' It's impossible for the ball to get altered like that on a cricket wicket where we knew there is a grass covering on. It's not a Pakistani wicket where there are cracks every centimetre.

Australia captain Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft sensationally admitted to ball-tampering during the third Test against South Africa on the 3rd day of the third Test, plunging cricket into potentially its greatest crisis.

Bancroft was caught on television cameras appearing to rub a yellow object on the ball, and later said: "I was in the wrong place at the wrong time. I want to be here (in the press conference) because I want to be accountable for my actions."

Television footage appeared to show Bancroft, 25, take on object out of his pocket while fielding in the post-lunch session on the third day of the Test at Newlands.

He was spoken to by umpires Nigel Llong and Richard Illingworth during the 43rd over of South Africa's second innings after appearing to have the object in his hand after fielding the ball at cover.

After this incident, Steve Smith and David Warner stepped down from their posts of captain and vice-captain before the start of the fourth day's play at Newlands and handed over the captaincy to Tim Paine.

Cricket World Cup Points Table

9 7 1 1 15 +0.80
9 7 2 0 14 +0.86
9 6 3 0 12 +1.15
9 5 3 1 11 +0.17
9 5 3 1 11 -0.43
9 3 4 2 8 -0.91
9 3 5 1 7 -0.03
9 3 5 1 7 -0.41
9 2 6 1 5 -0.22
9 0 9 0 0 -1.32

Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 3631 113
2 New Zealand 2547 111
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 3663 105
5 Australia 2640 98
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6420 123
2 India 6807 122
3 New Zealand 4763 113
4 Australia 5470 112
5 South Africa 5193 110
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
4 Australia 5471 261
5 India 7273 260
see more