Bancroft suggests some Australia bowlers knew of ball-tampering plan - 3 minutes read

Last updated on .From the section Cricket

Cricket Australia says it welcomes any "new information" about the sandpaper ball-tampering scandal, after batsman Cameron Bancroft suggested some bowlers were aware of the plot.

Former captain Steve Smith and David Warner were banned for a year.

CA's investigation cleared all other players and staff.

Asked in interview with the Guardian if some Australia bowlers knew of the plan, Bancroft said: "It's pretty probably self-explanatory."

CA's investigation confirmed opener Bancroft used sandpaper to damage the ball during the third Test in Cape Town. Television footage showed him hiding the sandpaper down his trousers.

CA found Smith and Bancroft had made "misleading public comments" after they initially claimed yellow tape was used.

"All I wanted to do was to be responsible and accountable for my own actions and part," 28-year-old Bancroft said.

"Obviously what I did benefits bowlers and the awareness around that, probably, is self-explanatory.

"I guess one thing I learned through the journey and being responsible is that's where the buck stops [with Bancroft himself].

"Had I had better awareness I would have made a much better decision."

In response to Bancroft's comments, CA said in a statement that it has "maintained all along that if anyone is in possession of new information in regards to the Cape Town Test of 2018 they should come forward and present it".

It added: "The investigation conducted at the time was detailed and comprehensive. Since then, no-one has presented new information to CA that casts doubt on the investigation's findings."

At the time, CA said: "It appears to be an isolated incident but if there are other allegations we will take them further."

CA concluded coach Darren Lehmann was not involved in the controversy, but he resigned at the end of that series in South Africa.

CA chief executive James Sutherland announced he would step down in June 2018 after 17 years in the role.

An independent report in October 2018 concluded that CA was partly to blame for the scandal and condemned a "winning without counting the costs" culture in Australian cricket.

Smith was stripped of the captaincy and he and Bancroft, who is playing for Durham this summer, were suspended from captaining Australia for at least the next two years.

Former vice-captain Warner will not be considered for any team leadership positions for the rest of his international career.

Wicketkeeper Tim Paine replaced Smith as Test captain, while opener Aaron Finch is their one-day and Twenty20 skipper.

Smith and Warner returned to Australia duty against Afghanistan at the 2019 World Cup, while Bancroft returned for the first Test of the Ashes against England later that year.

Source: BBC News

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