[caption id="attachment_706100" align="aligncenter" width="628"]<a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/AB-de-Villiers2.jpg"><img class="size-full wp-image-706100" alt="AB de Villiers, Steven Smith, David Warner, Cameron Bancroft, IPL 2018, Ball-tmpering" src="https://www.cricketcountry.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/AB-de-Villiers2.jpg" width="628" height="355" /></a> AB de Villiers Getty images[/caption] <p></p> <p></p>The third Test between <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/teams/south-africa/">South Africa </a> and <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/teams/australia/">Australia</a> was marked by the ugly incident of ball-tampering involving <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/players/steven-smith/">Steven Smith</a>, <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/players/david-warner/">David Warner </a>and Cameron Bancroft. This created a lot of criticism from players and board. Eventually, the trio was banned from playing international cricket. Smith and Warner faced a 12-month ban while Bancroft will serve nine-month ban. <p></p> <p></p><a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/players/ab-de-villiers/">AB de Villiers</a>, however has spoken in favour of the Australians sympatising with Smith. He believes the punishment the players are facing is 'harsh.' <p></p> <p></p> I feel sorry for the Australians, especially Steve smith, De Villiers told <em>The Guardian</em>. <p></p> <p></p> It was blown up massively. Yes, it is a serious matter but it was taken to a level where it really hurt them individually and I felt sorry for them. Especially Smith, who stood up thinking he was doing the right thing by his players. The way he was punished was harsh. <p></p> <p></p>De Villiers also said that Test cricket is meant to be tough. He even talked about <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/players/quinton-de-kock/">Quinton de Kock</a>'s incident and said that it got too personal. <p></p> <p></p> It was seriously tough cricket but that s how Tests should be played.There was all this talk about the line and you don t want to get too personal." <p></p> <p></p> I felt they got quite personal. Although we had an instance in Durban where one of our players [De Kock] did too ... that s a long story. But overall, I loved the toughness of the cricket played. It s just the rest that was uncalled for." <p></p> <p></p>De Villiers is currently playing the <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/tag/Indian-Premier-League">Vivo IPL 2018 </a> for the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB). The ball-tampering incident even led to Smith and Warner missing the IPL. <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/players/ajinkya-rahane/">Ajinkya Rahane </a> and Kane Williamson have filled their boots respectively.