Former Australia captain Michael Clarke says it isn’t surprising to learn that the bowlers knew Cameron Bancroft had tampered with the ball in the 2018 Cape Town Test versus South Africa which saw Bancroft get a 9-month ban, skipper Steve Smith and vice-captain David Warner earning a 12-month ban each.
Recently, Bancroft had hinted that the Aussie bowlers in that Test – Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Marsh, and Nathan Lyon – knew about his wrongdoings on the ball. He said it was “self-explanatory” that bowlers were aware the ball was being tampered with.
“They’ve got to hold the ball to bowl with it. I can tell you now if you went and grabbed a pen, just a pen and put a little ‘1’ somewhere on my cricket bat; on top of the handle, on the edge of the bat, on the toe of the bat, on the face, under the grip, anywhere, just a little number one, I would have noticed,” Michael Clarke said on Sky Sports’ Big Sports Breakfast on Monday.
“If you are playing sport at the highest level you know your tools that good it’s not funny. Can you imagine that ball being thrown back to the bowler and the bowler not knowing about it? Please,” he added.
It is not what he did say as what he didn’t say in regards to other people knowing: Michael Clarke
Michael Clarke further asserted that Bancroft had largely hinted that other people surely knew about the ball-tampering activity. The 40-year-old reckons it is not shocking news to hear that more than just 3 people were involved in the sandpaper gate saga in 2018.
“I love how the articles in the paper are ‘it is such a big surprise that Cameron Bancroft has made a …’ Actually if you read his quotes it is not what he did say as what he didn’t say in regards to other people knowing about sandpapergate.
“What’s the surprise? That more than three people knew? I don’t think anybody who has played the game of cricket or knows a little bit about cricket would know that in a team like that, at the highest level, when the ball is such an important part of the game. I don’t think anybody is surprised that more than three people knew about it,” the 2015 World Cup winning skipper maintained.