Australia batsman Cameron Bancroft granted special permission to play club cricket

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Bancroft has been cleared to play club cricket despite a suspension.

Cameron Bancroft has been granted special permission to play club cricket in Australia while serving a nine-month suspension for ball-tampering.

The opening batsman was banned from domestic and international cricket for nine months for his role in the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa in March.

But the Western Australia Cricket Association has cleared the 25-year-old to turn out for Willetton during the 2018/19 season.

A WACA tweet read: “The WADCC has granted Cameron Bancroft an exemption to play Premier Cricket for Willetton during the 2018-19 season.”

Bancroft incurred the suspension from Cricket Australia for his part in the ball-tampering controversy which engulfed Steve Smith’s tourists during the Cape Town Test against South Africa two months ago.

Captain Smith and his deputy David Warner were both banned from international and domestic cricket for a year after a plan was hatched to alter the condition of the ball at Newlands.

They are clear to play for their club sides in New South Wales, but a quirk of state association rules in Western Australia meant Bancroft needed an exemption to do so at the start of next season.

WACA chief executive Christina Matthews told Cricket Australia’s website: “I’m pleased to announce the Western Australia District cricket Council tonight approved Willetton’s application for an exemption to the rule that prevented Cameron from playing Premier cricket this season.

“It was strongly debated across a number of areas, but ultimately approved. It’s great news for Cameron, and I’d like to congratulate the WADCC on their decision.”

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Ian Chappell 'extremely disappointed' with India's decision to not play day-night Adelaide Test

Waseem Ahmed 13/05/2018
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India will play their Adelaide Test with the red ball.

Ian Chappell is “extremely disappointed”that India have refused to play a day-night Test against Australia later this year, saying the BCCI are more interested in winning rather than saving the longer format of the game.

The two nations had been in negotiations of playing a pink-ball match in Adelaide later this year but last week, the BCCI confirmed to Cricket Australia that all four of their Tests will be day affairs.

Writing in his column for ESPN Cricinfo, ex-Australia captain Chappell was critical of the world’s most powerful cricket body.

“The BCCI’s decision was extremely disappointing. Adelaide has become the unofficial home of day-night Test cricket, and the legacy of three years of rip-roaring success under lights there was expected to be further enhanced by the presence of a strong Indian team,” he said.

“No matter what excuse the BCCI offers, it’s hard to accept that this decision was anything other than the board looking to increase India’s chances of winning their first Test series in Australia against a weakened opponent.”

To date, there have been nine day-night Tests, with Australia hosting five. England, South Africa and ‘hosts’ Pakistan (in the UAE), have all staged games. West Indies are also set to host one against Sri Lanka in June later this year.

With the popularity of T20 going from strength to strength, Chappell believes all countries need to play their part in helping Test cricket survive.

“Nowhere can I find even a hint of it being in ‘the best interests of the game’. In an age where T20 leagues are flooding the market, Test cricket needs nurturing from the officials if it is to survive this influx.

Critical: Ian Chappell

Ian Chappell was critical of the BCCI.

“Day-night Test cricket in centres where it’s viable is a must if the long form is to have a future in a market that is becoming ever more competitive and where the officials are constantly looking for ways to compress the game.”

He added: “Apart from the obvious advantage of the matches being played at a more appropriate time for fans to either attend or watch on television, Day-Night Tests also conjure intriguing cricketing possibilities.

“Because of frequent dramatic changes in conditions, different strategies are likely to evolve for day-night Tests, particularly in relation to selection and batting orders. Day-night Tests also provide greater opportunities for bowlers and challenge a captain’s – anything that achieves those two aims is good for cricket.”

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Video: Nathan Lyon can't wait to welcome banned trio back into Australian team

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Australia off-spinner Nathan Lyon has said the banned trio of Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft have suffered enough and that he is more than happy to welcome them back into the Australian team.

Smith and then vice-captain Warner were banned for 12 months while Bancroft was exiled for nine months for their role in the ball-tampering incident in the third Test in South Africa in March.

Watch the full video below.

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