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Australia coach Lehmann wants forgiveness for banned trio

Australia coach Lehmann wants forgiveness for banned trio

Australia coach Lehmann wants forgiveness for banned trio

"Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft will not be considered for team leadership positions until a minimum of 12 months after the conclusion of their respective suspensions from worldwide and domestic cricket", said CA in a statement.

"We've got to make sure we're respecting the game, its traditions".

"Maybe we're at a point where the punishment just might not fit the crime".

According to a CA statement, Smith and Bancroft were banned from leadership positions for 12 months after completing their one-year ban from global and domestic cricket.

But at 28, he has plenty of cricket left in him and the fighter that he is, Smith should be back in Australia colours and go on to score tons of runs.

Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland rushed over to South Africa after the news broke as the organisation conducted its own investigation. At times we made mistakes, and we pushed things too far.

The players will be available for the World Cup in England and Wales that starts on May 30 next year, as well as the Ashes series later in the English summer.

Warner was also found guilty of "provision of advice to a junior player (Bancroft) regarding how a ball could be artificially altered including demonstrating how it could be done".

The three players have been suspended from "all global and domestic cricket", but Australia's governing body for the sport said they will be permitted to play club games and "will be encouraged to do so to maintain links with the cricket community". "Then I spoke to the players at tea time and I said we'll deal with it at the end of play, which happened during the process".

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Sutherland stopped short of saying the players who took part in the ball-tampering were cheats but confirmed their acts were considered to be cheating. "It has compromised the fans' faith in cricket and it's our responsibility to reinstate that confidence", Sutherland said.

In one intriguing detail, CA said that Bancroft used "sandpaper" to tamper with the ball on day three of the third test against South Africa in Cape Town last weekend.

Captain Steve Smith, vice-captain David Warner and opener Cameron Bancroft who was eventually caught on camera roughing up the ball with a foreign object, had been involved in the plan and all of them have been ordered to leave South Africa. He needed punishing but I think this is too harsh.

"Steve Smith I think is a good guy who made a huge mistake".

Waugh, who always believed in the sanctity of the Baggy Green added: "The Australian Cricket team has always believed it could win in any situation against any opposition, by playing combative, skillful and fair cricket, driven by our pride in the fabled Baggy Green".

"The investigation has found that only three players that knew of this plan, and we're absolutely satisfied of that".

"I haven't considered resigning, I've got a job to do".

Lehmann was speaking to Australian media only, after local South African journalists and global news agencies were barred from the news conference. The Australian media have come down hard on the players involved in the incident. And never cheat. Cheating is un-Australian.

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