05 April, 2018

The world remains shaken up after the Australian ball-tampering scandal, which many already refer to as ‘sandpaper-gate’. It’s one of the most shocking attempts at cheating in sport as a whole, and has been even more devastating in cricket, as it’s usually a sport known fondly for playing fairly and sticking to old traditions.

Cricket could be about to change in more ways than one after such criticism from followers of other sports and one website who’ll be keeping an eye on the situation as it continues to develop is Oddschanger, who even facilitate their own section on site with all the latest previews, predictions and their very own cricket betting tips.

Blatant cheating

Into the third day of their third test match with South Africa, there was a shocking site from the participating camera crews, when Cameron Bancroft, Steve Smith and David Warner were found out to be ball tampering in order to improve their Australian side’s chances of winning. It was done in such a blatant way too, with one cricketer keeping sandpaper in his trousers with an intention of sanding the ball down, which would likely change its path when it’s bowled at the South African batsman.

Caught red-handed by the camera crews, there was no way of avoiding their attempt to cheat, which led to lengthy bans for all three involved. They each opened up to the press in emotional conferences, but the damage had already been done and even after taking into consideration how much their nation had been forced into being dangerously competitive in such tournaments, it’s hard to forgive such clear attempts at tampering. It would also be fair to say that the remorse and upset might not be so dramatic if they’d never been caught.

Uncharacteristic of the sport

Whilst we see various controversies throughout the extensive world of sport like the Lance Armstrong doping scandal in cycling, the regular stresses which come with checking for performance-enhancing drugs in athletics, and ongoing issues with FIFA in football, cricket has tended to avoid being in the news for all the wrong reasons. Seeing such upset in a sport as tame as cricket tends to be is a shame and massively disappointing for fans of the sport as well as those who respect it but aren’t quite as knowledgeable on it.

Although it has had a negative impact on the sport as a whole, it’s unlikely to damn them to becoming a taboo subject in future years, as it was the actions of three individual players with an overly competitive mindset and clearly unorthodox intentions, so we’re looking forward to this all blowing over with a view to getting back to the traditionally fair mentality that cricket usually upholds so astutely.

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