Coach Darren Lehmann: Australia team 'must change' after ball-tampering scandal

Punishment meted out to Steve Smith David Warner and Cameron Bancroft too harsh Shane Warne

David Warner has issued an apology via social media after being banned for 12 months by Cricket Australia for his role in a ball-tampering plot during the third test against South Africa.

Warner, who has been dropped by sponsors Asics and LG since the scandal broke, was on his way back to Australia from South Africa when he apologised on Twitter and Instagram today.

Steve Smith will address the media in Sydney at 6.30pm AEDT.

The incident sparked condemnation from the public back in Australia, where the role of national cricket captain is widely seen as the second most important job in the country behind prime minister.

"The decisions and actions taken by David Warner and Cameron Bancroft are not something that Asics tolerates and are contrary to the values the company stands for", it said. I apologise for my part and take responsibility for it.

Its a stain on the game we all love and I have loved since I was a boy.

It combined words and emojis and it read: 'Hey Steve, we hear you are heading home for some time off.


Vice-captain Warner, along with skipper Steve Smith, have been banned from all worldwide and domestic cricket for a year for their behaviour. But the captain failed "to take steps to seek to prevent the development and implementation of that plan", Cricket Australia said as it released the findings of the investigation by its head of integrity that dragged in all the players, coaches and backroom staff for questioning.

Warner has also been dumped from the lucrative Indian Premier League for 2018, in which he was to be captain of the Hyderabad Sunrisers. - Smith was found to have directed "that evidence of attempted tampering be concealed on the field of play" which equates to telling Bancroft to hide the sandpaper in his pants.

Smith and Warner were banned for 12 months with both not allowed to captain Australia in any format.

But CA's board has determined Warner, who has fallen out with teammates over the ball-tampering saga, will never hold another leadership position again.

Lehmann said the Australians could perhaps learn from the way a team like New Zealand played their cricket.

Tasked with doing the tampering in the game in Cape Town, Bancroft was caught in the act by television cameras and then panicked and tried to hide the piece of sandpaper he used down the front of his pants, an action that was also caught on TV and replayed over and over in slow-motion and close-up. Coach Darren Lehmann, who was cleared of having any knowledge of the tampering plan, was part of a small group of players and backroom staff to see him off. Smith was later escorted by police into Johannesburg's global airport. The four-match series in 2-1 in favour of South Africa with the final game scheduled to begin from Friday.

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