Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

SMITH'S TEARS; SHAMED STAR COMFORTED BY DAD AS HE SAYS SORRY FOR HIS ROLE IN AUSSIE CHEAT SCANDAL Bancroft: I Lied and This Will Live with Me Forever

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

SMITH'S TEARS; SHAMED STAR COMFORTED BY DAD AS HE SAYS SORRY FOR HIS ROLE IN AUSSIE CHEAT SCANDAL Bancroft: I Lied and This Will Live with Me Forever

Article excerpt

Byline: Tom Collomosse Cricket Correspondent

STEVE SMITH broke down in tears today as he urged the children who idolised him to avoid the mistakes that have cost him his job as captain of Australia.

Speaking for the first time since he was banned for one year by Cricket Australia for his role in the cheating scandal that has rocked the sport, Smith struggled to keep his composure and cried openly at the end of his six-minute press conference in Sydney.

Smith went along with the plan by David Warner, who has also been suspended for 12 months and stripped of the vice-captaincy, to use sandpaper on the ball during the Cape Town Test against South Africa last Saturday.

Looking pale and drawn and with his father, Peter, comforting him as he fought to control his emotions, Smith was asked what he had to say to youngsters who had made him their hero. He replied: "Whenever you think about making a questionable decision, think about who you're affecting. You're affecting your parents and to see the way my old man's beenand my mum, it hurts." At that point, Smith started to cry.

He insisted "to his knowledge" Continued on Page 88 Continued from Back Page Australia had never doctored the ball before Cape Town and said: "To fans of cricket all over the world and in Australia who are disappointed and angry. I'm sorry. I want to make clear that as captain of Australia I take full responsibility. I made a serious error of judgement and I now understand the consequences. It was a failure of leadership, of my leadership.

"I will do everything I can to make up for my mistake and the damage it has caused. If any good can come of this, if it can be a lesson to others, then I hope I can be a force for change.

"I know I will regret this for the rest of my life. I am absolutely gutted. I hope in time I can earn back respect and forgiveness. I have been so privileged and honoured to represent my country and captain Australia.

"Cricket is the greatest game in the world. It's been my life and I hope it can be again. I am sorry and I'm absolutely devastated. I don't blame anyone. I [was] the captain and it was on my watch."

Warner said on Twitter he would speak publicly in a short time, after consulting friends, family and advisors. …

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