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David Warner resigns as Sunrisers Hyderabad’s IPL 2018 captain after ball-tampering scandal

David Warner, who led Sunrisers Hyderabad to the IPL crown in 2016, has already been stripped off the Australian vice-captaincy in the wake of the ball-tampering scandal. Steve Smith had earlier resigned as Rajasthan Royals captain

cricket Updated: Mar 28, 2018 16:21 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
David Warner,Australian cricket team,Sunrisers Hyderabad
David Warner signs the Spirit of Cricket bat during the IPL 2017 Captain's Meeting in Hyderabad on April 4, 2017. David Warner was the highest scorer for Sunrisers Hyderabad in Indian Premier League 2017. The Australian opener has now stepped down as SRH skipper in the wake of the ball-tampering episode in South Africa. (BCCI)

David Warner has stepped down as captain of Indian Premier league team Sunrisers Hyderabad. The decision comes in the wake of the ball-tampering scandal that has rocked the Australian cricket team on their tour of South Africa.

David Warner led Sunrisers Hyderabad to the IPL crown in 2016. The explosive left-handed opener had played a leading role for SRH and it didn’t come as a surprise when he was retained by the IPL franchise for a whopping Rs 12.5 crores for the 2018 season starting April 7.

In this photograph taken on May 17, 2017, Sunrisers Hyderabad captain and batsman David Warner (C) reacts after being bowled out for 37 runs during the 2017 Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 cricket eliminator match between Sunrisers Hyderabad and Kolkata Knight Riders at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore. (AFP)

Warner’s stepping down comes hot on the heels of Steve Smith resigning as captain of Rajasthan Royals. Ajinkya Rahane has been given the role of captain of RR, returning to IPL action after serving a two-year ban due to corruption.

Sunrisers Hyderabad will host Rajasthan Royals in their opening match of the season on April 9. The IPL starts two days earlier in Mumbai.

David Warner’s resignation as Sunrisers Hyderabad skipper was not unexpected. Sent home by Cricket Australia for his actions detriment to the spirit of the national team in South Africa, Warner is likely to be punished and could sit out of cricket for a long duration.

“In light of recent events, David Warner has stepped down as captain of Sunrisers Hyderabad. The new captain of the team will be announced shortly,” Sunrisers Hyderabad chief executive K. Shanmugam said on the team’s Twitter page. Shikhar Dhawan is a possible candidate to take over the captaincy.

The controversy surrounding Smith and Warner exploded on day three of the Cape Town Test last week, when Cameron Bancroft was caught using yellow tape to alter the condition of the ball before attempting to hide it in down his trousers.

Warner’s absence is likely to hurt Sunrisers Hyderabad. He was an inspiration leader and was the leading run-getter for Sunrisers Hyderabad with 641 runs. Gautam Gambhir of Kolkata Knight Riders was second best with 498 and Shikhar Dhawan (SRH) third best with 479.

Warner will also lose out substantially in terms of finances. Multinational electronics company LG has opted not to renew its contract with David Warner following the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa. Warner first started working with LG as the company’s brand ambassador in 2014.

(With agency inputs)

First Published: Mar 28, 2018 12:06 IST