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Ken Borland

CSA question timing of 2018 great ball-tampering scandal allegations

Posted on January 16, 2023 by Ken

Cricket South Africa have questioned the timing of former Australian captain Tim Paine’s allegations that the Proteas were also doing illegal work on the ball now that the great ball-tampering scandal of 2018 is back in the news.

Paine inherited the captaincy after Steve Smith was suspended, but stood down in November last year after it was revealed the married cricketer had been sending explicit messages to a Cricket Tasmania employee.

Paine’s autobiography, The Price Paid, was released on Tuesday and his shock accusations will obviously be great publicity for the book. Paine accuses the Proteas of ball-tampering even after Australia’s skulduggery with sandpaper was exposed at Newlands in the third Test, and David Warner, Cameron Bancroft and Smith were sent home in disgrace.

“I saw it happen in the fourth Test of that series. Think about that. After everything that had happened in Cape Town, after all the headlines and bans and carry-on,” Paine writes.

“I was standing at the bowlers’ end in the next Test when a shot came up on the screen of a South African player at mid-off having a huge crack at the ball.

“The television director, who had played an active role in catching out Cam, immediately pulled the shot off the screen.

“We went to the umpires about it, which might seem a bit poor, but we’d been slaughtered and were convinced they’d been up to it since the first Test. But the footage got lost. As it would,” Paine complained.

CSA chief executive Pholetsi Moseki told The Citizen it was upsetting that none of these allegations were made at the time of the numerous investigations that were held, and are now only appearing four-and-a-half years later.

“CSA and Cricket Australia have engaged on this matter and the necessary sanctions levied at the time. Both bodies have reiterated their commitment to a clean game, … above reproach,” Moseki said on Tuesday.

“It is unfortunate that allegations of ball-tampering are emerging at this stage, which information could have been useful had it come out at the time when the rot in the game was being rooted out.

“While CSA respects the rights of individuals to air their opinions, it also calls upon all those who love the game to come forward with any information of misconduct on the field at the appropriate time, and not wait for time to elapse. This will assist the relevant authorities within the system to investigate and institute appropriate relevant sanctions should they be required,” Moseki said.

Without their sandpaper, Australia’s attack in the fourth Test at the Wanderers had as much venom as a granny doing flower-arranging as the Proteas piled up 488 and 344/6 declared. Australia’s batting was equally lame as they crashed to 221 and 119 all out to be thrashed by 492 runs.

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