Smith-Warner stepped down from captaincy; Tim Paine lead remaining third Test
By Sandy - Mar 25, 2018 10:36 am
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Australian skipper Steven Smith and David Warner have stepped down from the captaincy and vice-captaincy duties respectively, while Tim Paine will take the captaincy role for the remaining third Test. The sudden decision was taken after Smith’s last day’s confession to involvement in ball tampering.

David Warner and Steve Smith

On the day 3 of the ongoing third Test between the hosts South Africa and Australia at Cape Town, Cameron Bancroft deliberately tried to change the ball condition through a yellow tape. Though he claimed that it didn’t work as the umpires also continued the match with the same ball and not awarded five-penalty runs for South Africa after observing that ball condition.

In the post-day press conference, while Bancroft admitted his action, Australian skipper Steven Smith confessed that the ‘leadership group’ knew about that.

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After his confession, Australian government was demanding the removal of Steven Smith from captaincy duty. Smith was facing a lot of criticism from the cricketing world.

Though Cricket Australia (CA) decided to retain his captaincy period at least for this Test, Smith has decided to step down from his duty. Australian opener David Warner has also decided to step down from the vice-captaincy duty as it is believing that he would one of the member of the ‘leadership group’.

CA chief executive James Sutherland confirmed the news as he said, “Following discussions with Steve Smith and David Warner they have agreed to stand down as Captain and Vice-Captain respectively for the remainder of this Test match. This Test match needs to proceed, and in the interim we will continue to investigate this matter with the urgency that it demands.

“As I said earlier today, Cricket Australia and Australian cricket fans expect certain standards of conduct from cricketers representing our country, and on this occasion these standards have not been met. All Australians, like us, want answers and we will keep you updated on our findings, as a matter of priority.”

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Meanwhile, CA chairman David Peever also confirmed that Tim Paine will lead the Australian team in the remaining third Test. He said, “The Board of Cricket Australia has endorsed Tim Paine to step in as Acting Captain for the remainder of this Test. Both Steve and David will take to the field today under Tim’s captaincy.

“The Board fully supports the process for an immediate investigation into what occurred in Cape Town. We regard this as a matter of the utmost seriousness and urgency. We will ensure we have all information available to make the right decisions for Australian Cricket.”

Tim Paine

Earlier, ASC chairman John Wylie and CEO Kate Palmer released a statement on Sunday where they told, “The ASC condemns cheating of any form in sport. The ASC expects and requires that Australian teams and athletes demonstrate unimpeachable integrity in representing our country.

“The Australian cricket team are iconic representatives of our country. The example they set matters a great deal to Australia and to the thousands of young Australians playing or enjoying the sport of cricket and who look up to the national team as role models.

“Given the admission by Australian captain Steve Smith, the ASC calls for him to be stood down immediately by Cricket Australia, along with any other members of the team leadership group or coaching staff who had prior awareness of, or involvement in, the plan to tamper with the ball.

“This can occur while Cricket Australia completes a full investigation.”

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has also expressed disappointment on that matter.

He said on that incident, “It seemed completely beyond belief that the Australian cricket team had been involved in cheating. I’ve spoken with David Peever, the Chairman of Cricket Australia, a few moments ago and I’ve expressed to him very clearly and unequivocally my disappointment and my concern about the events in South Africa.

“It’s their responsibility to deal with it, but I have to say that (to) the whole nation, who holds those who wear the Baggy Green up on a pedestal, about as high as you can get in Australia this is a shocking disappointment. It’s wrong, and I look forward to Cricket Australia taking decisive action soon.”

On the other hand, IPL team Rajasthan Royals has sacked Steven Smith from the captaincy.