India legend Sachin Tendulkar gave his support to Cricket Australia’s decision to suspend Steve Smith and David Warner from top-level cricket for a year over the ball-tampering scandal.
A statement from CA said Smith and Warner had been suspended from “all international and domestic cricket” while opening batsman Cameron Bancroft has been banned for nine months over the ball-tampering incident during the third Test in South Africa.
Tendulkar took to Twitter on Wednesday to say the right decision was made, stating: “Cricket has been known as a gentleman’s game. It’s a game that I believe should be played in the purest form. Whatever has happened is unfortunate but the right decision has been taken to uphold the integrity of the game. Winning is important but the way you win is more important.”
Cricket has been known as a gentleman's game. It's a game that I believe should be played in the purest form. Whatever has happened is unfortunate but the right decision has been taken to uphold the integrity of the game. Winning is important but the way you win is more important— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) March 28, 2018
However, former leg-spinner Shane Warne believes the Australia ball-tampering scandal has been blown out of proportion and the punishments handed to Smith, Warner and Bancroft are excessive.
Warne, who was handed a one-year suspension in 2003 after testing positive for a banned substance, says the reaction to the incident has gone over the top.
“To hear that the Australian cricket team had been involved in pre-mediated cheating is something that is embarrassing. There is no way you can condone it,” he said on his Facebook page.
“We are all so hurt and angry and maybe we weren’t so sure how to react. We’d just never seen it before.
“But the jump to hysteria is something that has elevated the offence beyond what they actually did, and maybe we’re at a point where the punishment just might not fit the crime.
“The hysteria has gone world wide, and everyone that dislikes the way the Australian cricket team has played, and over the past five or so years there have been rumblings about the way this team has gone about things, have been given the opportunity to lay the boots in. Their actions were indefensible, and they need to be severely punished. But I don’t think a one year ban is the answer.”
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