Cricket Australia has turned down the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) appeal to review the severity of sanctions imposed on Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft for their involvement in the ball-tampering scandal.
ACA’s plea came after an independent review by the Sydney-based Ethics Centre accused Cricket Australia of only paying lip service to the spirit of the game and not doing anything for the moral guidance of players.
"There must be a reconsideration of the harshness of the penalties handed down to Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft," ACA President Greg Dyer said in a statement
"The events in South Africa were in part a by-product of a culture and system which, amongst other things, placed too much pressure on players to win. Basic fairness demands these independently verified contributing factors must now be taken into consideration and the penalties reduced," he added.
CA, however, maintained that the sanctions issued on tainted players were absolutely appropriate and they will have to serve their time.
"There was a full investigation, and that was the outcome," Cricket Australia Chairman David Peever said. "The sanctions were carried out and imposed by the board after a very full and thoughtful process. And so the sanctions stand, as I said several weeks ago," he added.
Australian cricket was shaken to the core after cameras had caught Cameron Bancroft using a sandpaper to alter the condition of the ball during the Cape Town Test against South Africa earlier this year.
In a shocking press conference after the day's play, former Australia skipper Steve Smith had admitted that the entire ball-tampering saga was a deliberate plan from the “leadership group” of the side. Subsequently, Cricket Australia had banned Smith and his deputy David Warner for 12 months while Bancroft was handed a 9-month suspension from international cricket.
(With inputs from AFP)