Smith, Bancroft confirm they won’t appeal ban

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SYDNEY: Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft will not challenge the bans handed out to them by Cricket Australia for their roles in the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa.

“I meant what I said about taking full responsibility as captain of the team. I won’t be challenging the sanctions,” Smith said in a statement posted on Twitter on Wednesday. “They’ve been imposed by CA to send a strong message and I have accepted them.”

Smith, the top-ranked batsman in test cricket, was banned by Cricket Australia for 12 months after TV cameras spotted Bancroft using sandpaper to roughen one side of the ball during the third cricket test against South Africa in Cape Town last month. Vice-captain David Warner, found to be the instigator of a plot to tamper with the ball, was also suspended for 12 months. Bancroft received a nine-month ban.

In a teary news conference at the airport when he returned to Sydney last week after being sent home from Australia’s four-match tour, Smith apologized to all Australians for not doing enough to prevent the cheating plot.

He said he hoped to earn back the respect of fans and the rest of the country. After a few days to think it over, he announced his next move along the same lines via social media. “I would give anything to have this behind me and be back representing my country,” he tweeted.

Bancroft also made his announcement on Twitter. “Today I lodged the paperwork with Cricket Australia and will be accepting the sanction handed down,” Bancroft tweeted. “I would love to put this behind me and will do whatever it takes to earn back the trust of the Australian public. Thank you to all those who have sent messages of support.”


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