Cameron Bancroft, who was suspended for nine months for his role in the ball-tampering scandal during the Newlands Test against South Africa in March, is back in competitive cricket. Following the end of his ban, Bancroft was included in the playing XI for Perth Scorchers in their game against Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash League encounter played in Launceston, Hobart. Cricket Australia tweeted that Bancroft would bat at number five for the Scorchers, who got their campaign under way with a thumping win against the Adelaide Strikers, the current Big Bash League champions in Perth.
Bancroft was caught trying to tamper with the condition of the ball with yellow sandpaper during the Newlands Test against South Africa. Bancroft, along with the-then skipper Steve Smith and David Warner, were handed bans by Cricket Australia. Smith and Warner received one-year bans and they have been playing club cricket and in Twenty20 Leagues all over the world. Recently, Bancroft, in a chat with former Australia wicketkeeper Adam Gilchrist, said Warner had told him to tamper with the ball in South Africa.
Dave (Warner) suggested to me to carry the action out on the ball given the situation we were in the game and I didn't know any better," Bancroft said. "I didn't know any better because I just wanted to fit in and feel valued really. As simple as that.”
However, he also admitted that he was guided by his own distorted values in making the horrendous decision. "The decision was based around my values, what I valued at the time and I valued fitting in? you hope that fitting in earns you respect and with that, I guess, there came a pretty big cost for the mistake."
Bancroft was candid enough to own up the mistake he made. "I take no other responsibility but the responsibility I have on myself and my own actions because I am not a victim. I had a choice and I made a massive mistake and that is what is in my control."
Perth Scorchers are currently in seventh position and a good performance from Bancroft might result in him making the Test squad for Australia’s upcoming series against Sri Lanka. Tim Paine’s side are currently trailing the four-match series against Virat Kohli’s India 1-2 after losing the Melbourne Test by 137 runs.