South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis pleaded guilty to ball-tampering in 2013

Smith should have known what is fair and what is foul in worldwide cricket.

The Umpires shall use their judgment to apply the principle that actions taken to maintain or enhance the condition of the ball, provided no artificial substances are used, shall be permitted.

But why is the condition of the ball so important? While earlier such methods often went unnoticed, in the television era allegations of ball tampering have surfaced fairly regularly. "To shine the ball is a normal thing and it is understood". Such practices are not deemed to be contrary to the laws, even if they may not be within the spirit of cricket. And nearly every cricket-playing nation has had its villains.

Smith, also docked 100 percent of his match fee by the ICC, will miss the fourth and final Test in Johannesburg from Friday due to his ban.However, Bancroft, the 25-year-old opening batsman, escaped an ICC suspension. Any Australian cricketer, representing the country in all their worldwide ties over the next one year, stands to gain $370,000 on account of match fee. The incident was reportedly over a jibe about Warner's wife Candice, with the Australian describing the remark as "vile and disgusting".

The Australia team was then left in the awkward position of having to continue playing a game they admitted to cheating in, and lost heavily to increase the humiliation.


"If you are a terrific cricket team you want to be remembered as that - wonderful players, wonderful people". This was part of their strategy, but seldom have they been so desperate to employ underhand methods to win a match.

"We saw this game as such an important game, not that other games aren't important as well, but an opportunity".

The heat may also burn the financial muscle of Cricket Australia, which is in the middle of renegotiating its broadcast rights. They either did not think they would be caught, or were not deterred by the possible sanctions.

Several players and teams have run afoul of these regulations.

So far, Smith has been fined (for the third test) and suspended from the fourth test by the International Cricket Council (ICC) while he and David Warner have stood down from leadership roles ahead of a pending Cricket Australia investigation.


Australia came tumbling down from that moral high ground with its stunning confession to cheating in a daring - if slightly comical - plot masterminded by its most senior and trusted players.

Henriques said he thought Smith's claim about the leadership group discussing the plan at lunch was made without him fully understanding the backlast that would follow. The Indians had every reason to be felt cheated of a certain draw as numerous decisions were ruled against them. The great Sachin Tendulkar was accused of ball tampering in South Africa in 2001 though the charges were later dropped amid charges of racism against the match referee.

Skipper Smith has got the best retainers contract from Cricket Australia worth $1.5 million, best for any worldwide cricket captain.

However, it is Australians themselves who are the most outraged by Smith's folly.


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