Virat Kohli opens up on Smith, Warner ball-tampering scandal
Indian cricket team captain Virat Kohli has finally come out with his views regarding the ball-tampering scandal surrounding Australian powerhouses Steve Smith and David Warner. Kohli said that he was sad to see the public backlash faced by the duo for their role in the same against South Africa earlier this year. Here is more on the same.
Kohli sad to see the response surrounding the Aussie duo
In an interview on Fox Cricket, the Indian skipper told Adam Gilchrist that one would never want to see anyone going through what Smith and Warner faced. "Well, it was sad to see. As big a thing as it became, you never want to see anyone go through that because I have known David and I have known Steve as well."
'You never want to see such a thing happen'
"Apart all the competitiveness on the field and all the battles that you have, you never want to see such a thing happen to two sportsmen and what happened after [that] was, I felt, very bad. I felt the things happened after shouldn't have happened,"
Public response was terrible
After Smith and Warner arrived in Australia, they were treated poorly by fans and in his press-conference the former Aussie skipper broke down completely. "The things that hit me the hardest was the way they were received at the airports and the way they were escorted out. Those things to me felt like this is very, very hectic," said Kohli.
The Aussies were handed a ban in March
Both the former Australian captain Smith and vice-captain Warner are serving a 12-month ban, while Cameron Bancroft was axed for 9 months The ban was awarded for their involvement in the ball-tampering scandal which happened during the Test series in South Africa, earlier this year, in March. They were barred from playing domestic Sheffield Shield and the Big Bash Twenty20 competition besides international cricket.
Cricket Australia was in no mood to lift ban
Cricket Australia had come under immense pressure from the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) as it called for the ban to end. This happened after the release of the Longstaff review, which put some of the blame for the ball-tampering scandal on CA. "The ACA submission around the players' sanctions was received by the board a few days ago," CA CEO Kevin Roberts had stated.
Smith, Warner to play IPL next and perhaps WC
The trio could not participate in the ongoing India-Australia series. Smith and Warner, who were retained by their Indian Premier League franchises, will head straight to the IPL and then could make the cut for the ICC World Cup 2019 next.