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Tampering With a Cricket Ball is Wrong: Bancroft

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: April 10, 2019, 8:19 PM IST
Tampering With a Cricket Ball is Wrong: Bancroft

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Australia batsman Cameron Bancroft has said the ball-tampering suspension that kept him out of cricket for nine months is a thing of the past, and stressed that he's ready to move on.

Bancroft, who will lead Durham in the county championship this season, said he tampered the ball to feel 'valued' by his teammates, but conceded it was a mistake.

"Tampering with a cricket ball is wrong," he told the Daily Telegraph. "Not in the spirit of the game. Dave, Steve and I learnt the hard way. There were a lot of mistakes I made. It was really shocking and disappointing. But it's in the past now and I want to move forward.

"The decision was based around my values - I valued fitting in with my mates, earning respect from senior players. Sometimes your ego gets the better of you."

While serving his suspension, Bancroft was involved with volunteer projects and got into yoga. He said the time away from the game helped him learn about himself.

"As much as I missed cricket, the opportunity it gave me to look at myself was one of the best things that ever happened to me," he said. "I had to go home. Sit with myself, grieve, forgive myself, and then ultimately move forward.

"I've learned a lot about myself, I think being able to take time to detach myself from cricket was something that I found a lot of joy in. To know that the identity and person I created from being a professional cricketer, a game which I love, I think I was just able to connect a lot with different parts of the community, meet a lot of great people.

"Turning that event from South Africa into a positive was something I was really proud of and to have that opportunity to grow as a person, you'd be silly not to take those steps forward."

Bancroft is now aiming for a spot in the Ashes in England in August. If he were to be selected, the crowds across venues could give him a rough time but Bancroft was not too perturbed.

"Millions of people around the world probably have issues with me as a person," he said. "I've had people judge me, and I deserve that. I can understand people are going to feel hurt. All I can do is show up, enjoy my cricket and do my best. If people boo, it is what it is.

"But I want to play for Australia again, 100 percent. That would be fantastic, wouldn't it, because all three of us have been there for each other. We've ridden the waves of the last 12 months, we've all grown and look forward to seeing how that allows us to help others, and have a strong impact through our mistakes. I know all three of us feel that way. That would be really exciting. That's the place we want to be."
First Published: April 10, 2019, 8:19 PM IST

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