Cricket Australia shares footage of England fans hurling abuses at Aussie cricketers during Ashes 2019
The video also showed England fans gesturing at Smith and Warner by rubbing their hands, implying the Sandpapatergate episode.
The return of two of Australia’s most prized players — David Warner and Steve Smith — to international cricket following their year-long suspension after the infamous Sandpapergate scandal has not been easy. Though the two talented batsmen have made the most of the opportunities they got on their return to the 22 yards, the spectators have not always accepted them as gracefully. It was seen during the World Cup in England last year that the fans booed the tainted players which made irked India captain Virat Kohli.
That the duo was also not treated gently during the Ashes that followed the World Cup in England recently became evident after a teaser of Amazon Prime’s upcoming documentary showing how Warner and Smith coped with abuses hurled at them during the Test series against England came out.
Previously, too, the documentary had a similar teaser showing Smith’s determination to cope with the hostility at Lord’s during the second innings of the Test match there. Smith had a phenomenal run with the bat in the series with over 700 runs.
In the recent teaser of the documentary named ‘The Test’, it was shown how England fans chanted ‘cheats’ when the Australian cricketers departed from the stadium, during the first Test in Edgbaston. The visitors went on to win the match by 251 runs.
Latest doco sneak peek: how the Australian players dealt with the rowdy England fans during the #Ashes.
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) February 25, 2020
“There was the booing, but the worst part was at the end of each day’s play. Just the abuse!! By the end of it. They (Aussie cricketers) decide to laugh in the face of it, and that takes immense courage,” Australia head coach Justin Langer said while lamenting about the gesture.
“Yea, that’s just all part of trying to embrace it; we just sort of went with it. People were everywhere on the streets. That’s just how Edgbaston was really. It was really an aggressive place,” Tim Paine, Australia’s Test captain, said.
The video also showed England fans gesturing at Smith and Warner by rubbing their hands, implying the Sandpapatergate episode, the infamous episode in SA in early 2018 whereby the Australian players were found tampering with the ball during a Test match to influence the outcome of the series. The incident led to massive consequences with Smith losing the captaincy and Warner the vice-captaincy.
Smith though felt that the Australian cricketers handled the booing episode well. “I think everyone handled it pretty well. And it seemed like that the whole way home, there were just people hurling abuse at the bus. It was actually brilliant looking at some of the things we were looking at off the bus. It was good to get some comedy like that on the bus,” he said in the video.
The 2019 Ashes ended 2-2 which meant Australia didn’t lose an Ashes in England after 2001.