A minor three weeks ban for Alex Hales surprises Scott Styris

A minor three weeks ban for Alex Hales surprises Scott Styris

Styris took an indirect dig at the treatment meted out to Hales despite the violation of rules.

Alex Hales
Alex Hales of England. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Rivalry in the cricketing world came to the fore on Friday after former New Zealand all-rounder Scott Styris poked fun at the latest controversy that rocked the fraternity. England batsman Alex Hales, chosen in the hosts’ World Cup squad for the tournament starting May 30, failed a recreational drug test for the second time and was handed a ban for 21 days. Styris raised the issue of two Australian players facing a 12-month ban for tampering with the ball during a Test series in South Africa last year and mocked the difference in the penalty handed out.

The 30-year-old Hales, who plays for Nottinghamshire, is a part of their World Cup plans. He, however, hasn’t turned up for the county side this season citing personal reasons. On Friday, it was reported that the batsman is in the middle of a three-week ban imposed by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) for testing positive the second time.

Styris rakes up Sandpapergate scandal

Styris, 43, took an indirect dig at the treatment meted out to Hales despite the violation of rules. He raked up the infamous Sandpapergate scandal that broke out in South Africa last year when Australian stalwarts Steve Smith and David Warner were banned for a year along with newcomer Cameron Bancroft.

They were guilty of ball tampering and the incident had left Australian cricket in chaos. The coach stepped down, as did top board officials even while the Kangaroos continued to struggle on the field.

In a tweet, Styris expressed shock that while an offence like ball tampering invited a penalty with a magnitude of a 12-month ban, a failed drug test resulted in a three weeks ban only. Twitterati said in reaction to Styris’ tweet that it was because England require the limited-overs specialist in their WC campaign. Former Three Lions skipper, however, lashed out at Hales saying he did not deserve a place in the WC squad.

Smith and Warner completed their bans last month and were picked for Australia’s World Cup squad to be led by Aaron Finch.

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