Steven Smith with Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Nathan Lyon © Getty Images
Steven Smith with Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Nathan Lyon © Getty Images

While the cricketing world is still coming to terms with Australia‘s ball-tampering attempt, more twists to the tale is just adding fuel to the fire. As per the recent development to the controversy, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood were already aware of the ball-tampering plan. When Steven Smith had admitted the crime along with Cameron Bancroft after Day 3′s play, the skipper had mentioned about the leadership group that involves – Smith, David Warner, Nathan Lyon, Starc and Hazlewood. However, Starc as well as Hazlewood have denied of any such reports that has resulted into a split within the Australian team.

Hazlewood, Starc are furious for being dragged into the incident. There are also reports that one of the bowlers has contacted the Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) to demand that CA clarifies their lack of involvement. The sources close to the development said: “They knew about it – don’t worry about that. You don’t have something like this happen and the whole team not know. Of course they are playing dumb about it – you can’t blame them,” as mentioned on wwos.nine.com.au.

Smith and Warner had stepped down as captain and vice-captain respectively during the third Test against South Africa after the incident. Smith also stepped down as the captain of Rajasthan Royals (RR) for 2018 IPL. Ajinkya Rahane has taken over the mantle.

CA, who are currently investigating the incident in South Africa, will be ready with an update on Smith and the players involved in the controversy by Wednesday morning.