David Warner (L), Steven Smith (center) and Cameron Bancroft © Getty Images
David Warner (L), Steven Smith (center) and Cameron Bancroft © Getty Images

Cricket Australia had a torrid time in March during the national side’s South Africa tour. In the penultimate Test between Australia and South Africa at Cape Town, Australia’s skipper and his deputy, Steven Smith and David Warner respectively, along with opener Cameron Bancroft were involved in ball-tampering scandal. The controversy rocked the cricketing fraternity, and everyone had a judgement on the trio’s wrongdoings. While Warner and Smith cried and confessed their ‘wrong deeds’ in the press conference, Australia veteran all-rounder Moises Henriques has a new angle to the whole saga.

Henriques came out in the open and suggested that he does not support the act, but certainly finds a “selfless deed” in the entire fiasco.

Henriques’ perspective

“I’m not condoning ball tampering at any stage but I’m just saying this to hold a slightly different perspective. It’s not okay to cheat or ball tamper, but to realise that David doesn’t ball tamper so he scores more runs, he doesn’t do it for his own personal statistical gain, or whatever it was, and Bancroft is the same. It’s the batters that are all involved here and they’re not cheating for themselves and they’re not breaking their rules for their own personal statistical gain so they can average 50 instead of 40 or whatever it might be.

They’re doing it for the bowlers. They did the wrong thing but they’re trying to do it so the team wins. They’re not fixing a match where they’re purposely losing the game for their own financial gain or anything like that. I think there is a bit of grey area in terms of the character of these people. They’ve broken the rules, been punished, and so they should be. Some of the comments about their character are a little bit out of line,” stated the 31-year-old.

Author’s take

The ball-tampering scandal irked every cricket fan, including me. I have always admired Cricket Australia’s aggressive nature and “winning habit.” It used to get the better of me as well, but never did I imagine Australia to be so desperate for victory and indulge in ball-tampering. Having said that, these incidents have occurred before, and even the greats of the game have been fined. Warner, Bancroft and Smith made a huge error of judgement, but should be praised for accepting all charges. In addition, coming to Henriques’ claims, he is obviously defending his countrymen but if you read it again, he hasn’t made a completely “bizarre” comment. A mistake is a mistake, but the tainted Australian trio went overboard for “winning” and not purposely “losing.”

Henriques is sure to be trolled for this though!