Former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting is left shocked after interviews of banned players Steven Smith and Cameron Bancroft. Both of these players had recently given their interviews which have once again added fuel to the fire of ball tampering scandal. In fact, Ponting believes it also shifted the focus from the Boxing Day Test match.

Meanwhile, Steven Smith and Cameron Bancroft spoke their heart out regarding the ball-tampering controversy. In fact, Cameron Bancroft said that it was David Warner who encouraged him to alter the condition of the ball. Thus, he did so to feel valued in the team.

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Ponting is left surprised.

“I’ve seen a couple of headlines (since the interviews), which I’ve been shocked at, I must admit. Some of the things that have been said have been quite shocking to me,” Ponting told cricket.com.au.

Ponting said it has been nine months since the controversial incident happened in the Cape Town Test. Hence, it doesn’t make sense to talk about it now especially ahead of a Boxing Day Test Match.

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“We’re nine months on from this stuff and there’s still a lot being spoken about what happened in Cape Town. Now that those stories are out there, it’s going to be interesting to see what the reaction is tomorrow in newspapers and news channels. There’s enough in those stories to raise a few eyebrows,” added Ponting.

The two-times World Cup-winning captain said the players and Cricket Australia won’t be happy about the interviews which were given by Smith and Bancroft. Furthermore, former batsman Dean Jones was also not impressed by the respective interviews.

Cameron Bancroft, David Warner
Cameron Bancroft (Photo by Paul Kane/Getty Images)

“From a wholly journalistic approach, you can understand the reasons why it was aired today. You’ve probably got a big percentage of the population watching the cricket today and they’ll be reading about it tomorrow. I can understand how that could happen. I’m not sure how happy the players would be about it or Cricket Australia, because it’s a pretty special moment in Australian cricket on a day like today. So, we’ll see what the reaction is,” said Ponting.

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On the other hand, Cameron Bancroft will return to action when Hobart Hurricanes and Perth Scorchers will take on each other on 30 December in the ongoing Big Bash League.