File image of Australia cricketer Steve Smith.(AP)
File image of Australia cricketer Steve Smith.(AP)

South Africa vs Australia: ‘The last time I was here...’ - Steve Smith on playing in SA for the first time since Sandpapergate

Steve Smith and team mate David Warner were banned by Cricket Australia for a year, and Cameron Bancroft for nine months, after their involvement in an attempt to alter the state of the ball using sandpaper during a Test tour of the country in March 2018.
By Reuters | Cape Town
UPDATED ON FEB 19, 2020 07:40 PM IST

Australia batsman Steve Smith says his reception in South Africa has been “lovely” on his first tour since the infamous ‘Sandpapergate’ scandal, but expects that to change when he steps onto The Wanderers on Friday. Australia take on hosts South Africa in the first match of a three-game Twenty20 International series at a ground nicknamed ‘The Bull Ring’ for its hostile atmosphere, where England’s Ben Stokes had an altercation with a fan as recently as last month.

Also Read: Show respect to Smith and Warner: CSA tells South African fans as Australia arrive

Smith and team mate David Warner were banned by Cricket Australia for a year, and Cameron Bancroft for nine months, after their involvement in an attempt to alter the state of the ball using sandpaper during a Test tour of the country in March 2018.

“It’s nice to be back playing in South Africa,” Smith told reporters on Wednesday. “The last time I was here things didn’t end overly well, but I’ve also got really fond memories of playing here.

“Just walking into the hotel in Sandton, initially I was like, ‘the last time I left here it wasn’t pretty’. It wasn’t the best time in my life. But I’ve moved on from that and learned a lot.

“I’ve been back playing for a year now. I’m really enjoying it and I feel like I’m playing well. I’m in a nice place.”

Also Read: ‘Not enough people to say no’ - Ricky Ponting speaks out on Sandpapergate

Smith says there have been no signs of animosity from South African fans off the pitch. In fact, quite the opposite.

“Everywhere I have been the people have been lovely. Guys have come up and taken some photos and been really nice,” he said.

“It’s been normal, the same as compared to when I’ve been here previously. It’s a terrific place to tour and I’m glad to be back.”

But he expects that to change once the games begin, especially at one of South Africa’s most intimidating venues.

“I think they’re hostile here at the best of times,” he said.

Also Read: Warner, Smith braced for ‘very hostile’ South Africa crowds after cheating scandal

“It doesn’t bother me too much. (Coach) Justin (Langer) said the other day that we had the dress rehearsal in England (last year). There was a fair bit going on there.

“I don’t notice it, particularly when I’m batting. Maybe a little bit when I’m fielding, but then again, it’s just words, it doesn’t affect me. It’s about getting on with the job.”

The Twenty20 series starts in Johannesburg, before moving to Port Elizabeth on Sunday and finally Cape Town next Wednesday. The sides will then clash in three ODI matches.

(Reporting By Nick Said; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
Sanju Samson (Extreme Left) is the new captain of Rajasthan Royals while Glenn Maxwell and Steve Smith have been released. (IPL)
Sanju Samson (Extreme Left) is the new captain of Rajasthan Royals while Glenn Maxwell and Steve Smith have been released. (IPL)

IPL 2021 retention: Samson new RR captain; Smith, Malinga, Maxwell released

By hindustantimes.com, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 20, 2021 07:31 PM IST
  • A few big names were released from their respective franchises, including Steve Smith, who has been replaced by Sanju Samson as the new captain of Rajasthan Royals.
Close
Mumbai Indians celebrate Lasith Malinga after the fast bowler bowled a fantastic over in the IPL 2019 final. (Mumbai Indians/Twitter)
Mumbai Indians celebrate Lasith Malinga after the fast bowler bowled a fantastic over in the IPL 2019 final. (Mumbai Indians/Twitter)

Lasith Malinga retires from franchise cricket

By hindustantimes.com, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 21, 2021 12:03 AM IST
  • The development comes hours after MI released Malinga from their squad, with the franchise owner Aakash Ambani confirming the news.
Close
Steve Smith in action for Rajasthan Royals(IPL)
Steve Smith in action for Rajasthan Royals(IPL)

IPL 2021 player retention: Full list of players released & retained by teams

By hindustantimes.com
PUBLISHED ON JAN 20, 2021 08:06 PM IST
  • IPL 2021: Here is the full list of players retained and released by all eight franchises.
Close
Australia's Pat Cummins (R), Tim Paine (C) and Nathan Lyon walk off the field as rain stop the play during the day four of the fourth cricket Test match between Australia and India at The Gabba in Brisbane on January 18, 2021. (Photo by Patrick HAMILTON / AFP) / --IMAGE RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - STRICTLY NO COMMERCIAL USE--(AFP)
Australia's Pat Cummins (R), Tim Paine (C) and Nathan Lyon walk off the field as rain stop the play during the day four of the fourth cricket Test match between Australia and India at The Gabba in Brisbane on January 18, 2021. (Photo by Patrick HAMILTON / AFP) / --IMAGE RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - STRICTLY NO COMMERCIAL USE--(AFP)

‘We’re scared to lose’, Michael Clarke questions Australia’s negative approach

By hindustantimes.com
PUBLISHED ON JAN 20, 2021 03:19 PM IST
An injury-stricken Indian side scripted history on Tuesday by beating Australia by three wickets in the Brisbane Test to win the series 2-1 and retain the Border-Gavaskar Trophy.
Close
Bangladesh's Shakib Al Hasan (L) celebrates with temamates after bowling out West Indies' Alzarri Joseph during the first one-day international (ODI) cricket match between Bangladesh and West Indies at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka.(AFP)
Bangladesh's Shakib Al Hasan (L) celebrates with temamates after bowling out West Indies' Alzarri Joseph during the first one-day international (ODI) cricket match between Bangladesh and West Indies at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka.(AFP)

Shakib returns with 4-8 as Bangladesh defeats West Indies

AP
PUBLISHED ON JAN 20, 2021 06:30 PM IST
  • All-rounder Shakib was back after being given a two-year ban by the International Cricket Council in October 2019, with one year suspended, for failing to report approaches from a bookmaker.
Close
Live
File photo of newly-appointed RR captain Sanju Samson(HT Archives)
File photo of newly-appointed RR captain Sanju Samson(HT Archives)

IPL 2021 Retention Highlights: MI release Malinga, RR name Samson as captain

By hindustantimes.com
UPDATED ON JAN 20, 2021 07:06 PM IST
IPL 2021 Retention: Rajasthan Royals have released Steve Smith and appointed Sanju Samson as their new leader. Mumbai Indians parted ways with veteran pacer Lasith Malinga while CSK released Harbhajan Singh, Piyush Chawala and Shane Watson.
File image of Michael Clarke. (Getty Images)
File image of Michael Clarke. (Getty Images)

'He's got Dhoni, Gilchrist in his batting': Clarke hails India's Brisbane hero

By hindustantimes.com
UPDATED ON JAN 20, 2021 05:00 PM IST
  • India vs Australia: Former Australia captain Michael Clarke, who led Australia to the 2015 World Cup title weighed in on India's historic series win, calling the player an 'absolute superstar'.
Close
India's Rishabh Pant hits the ball to the boundary.(AP)
India's Rishabh Pant hits the ball to the boundary.(AP)

Test Rankings: Pant becomes highest-ranked keeper-batsman after Gabba win

By hindustantimes.com, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 20, 2021 02:18 PM IST
India vs Australia: In the latest ICC rankings released on Wednesday, Pant climbed up to his career-best 13th position to become the highest-ranked wicketkeeper-batsman.
Close
Kings XI Punjab have the biggest purse heading into the IPL 2021 auction. (Getty Images)
Kings XI Punjab have the biggest purse heading into the IPL 2021 auction. (Getty Images)

IPL 2021: Here is how much money each team has left for auction

By hindustantimes.com, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 20, 2021 11:10 PM IST
  • IPL: With the IPL 2021 auction not too far, we take a look at the purse available to all eight teams.
Close
Virat Kohli leaves the field after being dismissed in the first Test. (Getty Images)
Virat Kohli leaves the field after being dismissed in the first Test. (Getty Images)

Return of Virat Kohli: No threat to captaincy but he will be among equals

PTI, New Delhi
PUBLISHED ON JAN 20, 2021 07:39 PM IST
When it comes to views, there are many - some are quite open about the theory of split captaincy and some are speaking about it in hushed tones.
Close
Steve Smith in action for Rajasthan Royals(IPL)
Steve Smith in action for Rajasthan Royals(IPL)

Rajasthan Royals release skipper Steve Smith ahead of auctions

By Rasesh Mandani
UPDATED ON JAN 20, 2021 11:12 PM IST
Under Smith's captaincy, the inaugural edition champions RR finished last in the last IPL in the UAE, where the star Australian batsman played all the 14 league matches and scored 311 runs.
Close
Australia captain Tim Paine looks on. (Getty Images)
Australia captain Tim Paine looks on. (Getty Images)

‘He stood up, took on the Indian players’: Lee backs under-fire Aussie captain

By hindustantimes.com, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 20, 2021 04:10 PM IST
  • India vs Australia: Amid the plethora of people who want the 36-year-old out, Tim Paine has received the backing of Brett Lee
Close
Indian players pose with the winning trophy after defeating Australia by three wickets on the final day of the fourth cricket test match at the Gabba, Brisbane, Australia, (PTI)
Indian players pose with the winning trophy after defeating Australia by three wickets on the final day of the fourth cricket test match at the Gabba, Brisbane, Australia, (PTI)

Deus ex machina: Two decades apart, India do the unexpected against Aussies

UPDATED ON JAN 20, 2021 08:40 PM IST
India vs Australia: What helped India win this series? There could be many logical answers and yet there could be no answer to it at all. It wasn't meant to happen, such things don't happen at all. The rarity of such this accomplishment is what makes it surreal and overwhelming. Perhaps like a deus ex machina, that enters a play at the last moment and solves all the problems.
Close
File photo of Kevin Pietersen(Instagram/KP)
File photo of Kevin Pietersen(Instagram/KP)

‘ASLI TEAM kuch hafto baad aa rahi hai': Pietersen warns India

By hindustantimes.com
PUBLISHED ON JAN 20, 2021 12:57 PM IST
Pietersen took to Twitter on Tuesday and posted a message to warn India that the 'real team' is coming to take them on.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP