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Re-emergence of ball-tampering saga may jeopardize Smith's captaincy chances, believes Mark Taylor

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Smith had lost his captaincy post the Sandpaper Gate

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Re-emergence of ball-tampering saga may jeopardize Smith's captaincy chances, believes Mark Taylor

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SportsCafe Desk

05/23/2021

Former Aussie cricketer Mark Taylor reckoned that the recent furore over the ball-tampering scandal doesn't help Steve Smith's chances of returning back as captain. He also batted for the bowlers and feels that it's obvious to him that they weren't involved in the ball-tampering saga.

Discarded Australian opener Cameron Bancroft brought back the 2018 ball-tampering scandal to the headlines when he hinted towards the possible involvement of the Australian bowlers in the whole saga. It led to a lot of assertions from the public and the cricket experts across the globe, though Bancroft denied any new information to the board when quizzed about the same again. 

But the recurrence of the ball-tampering controversy that cost Steven Smith the Australian captaincy in the first place comes as a big blow to his chances of getting reinstated as the skipper of the side, according to former Aussie skipper Mark Taylor. Tim Paine's captaincy tenure doesn't seem like continuing for long, and that had led to speculations of Smith's possible return as captain in the last few months, but Taylor reckons that the recent furore over the ball-tampering saga doesn't help Smith's cause.

"It doesn't help. No doubt about it, it doesn't help his case, because he like I'm sure most people involved in the game would like this just to go away; which it won't go away. There's no doubt there's a growing momentum around Steve Smith being a potential captain, no doubt about that," Taylor said on Sports Sunday, reported wwos.nine.com.au. 

Cameron Bancroft's recent statement led to intense criticism of the Australian bowlers and also the alleged half-baked investigation conducted by Cricket Australia in wake of the incident. It even compelled the bowling group from the Cape Town Test to issue a joint statement to maintain their non-involvement in the whole issue. Taylor asserted that he believes that the bowlers had no idea about the Aussie trio’s attempt of tampering with the ball. 

"The bleeding obvious to me is they didn't know that it had been doctored. You only have to read what they said during the week," Taylor said.

"If I could just read it out: 'We did not know a foreign substance was taken on to the field to alter the condition of the ball'. And as they said, the two umpires in the game did not change the ball. So there was an attempt to change the condition of the ball but they didn't get to do it. The umpire said, 'That ball's still fine, let's get on with it'. So they did not know."

Taylor also backed CA's investigation and felt that they did enough at the time when the scandal broke out.

"The question about whether Cricket Australia did enough three years ago, the answer to that is yes. I think we had a four-day window between the end of the Cape Town Test and the start of the fourth Test which was at Johannesburg, to send someone over, do an investigation, make a report and then make some decisions around that. That was obviously to send the three players home and to deal with it then."

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