Shane Watson believes bans for Steve Smith, David Warner, Cameron Bancroft ‘extreme’
Shane Watson, former Australian cricket team player, believes the penalties handed out to Australian cricketers Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft as a fall-out of the ball-tampering scandal were extreme.
Smith and Warner are currently serving year-long bans due to their roles in the Cape Town scandal in March, while the youngster Bancroft was handed a nine-month suspension.
“It is an extreme penalty for what they did compared to the bans that have happened and the reprimands that have happened in the past,” Watson said at a news conference in Dubai, reported Reuters.
“They’ve paid a heavy price, there is no question, and when they come back they will be doing everything they can to try and repay people for the mistakes they made.”
Watson, who scored a match winning century in the recently concluded IPL 2018 final for Chennai Super Kings vs Sunrisers Hyderabad, isn’t the only one who has voiced a similar opinion.
Former Australia international and spin-bowling great Shane Warne, who served as a mentor for IPL team Rajasthan Royals, has also said the punishments on the trio were overly harsh.
Watson said there was no question that the players “made a huge error of judgment” and backed new Australia coach Justin Langer as the “right man” to take charge of the team.
“He is certainly going to make sure the Aussies are on the right track,” said Watson, who retired from international cricket in 2016.
Watson also ruled out a return to international cricket, stating that he believed younger, uncapped players should be given a chance instead. He further added that he was open to a mentoring role within the Australian cricket team but had no interest in going out on tour.
The Australian team heads to England next month for a tour which includes five one-day internationals and a Twenty20 match.
(With Reuters inputs)