We respectfully request an end to this' - Starc, Cummins, Lyon and Hazlewood release joint statement after recent revelations on ball-tampering scandal

"It has gone on too long and it is time to move on," the Aussie quarter of bowlers said in a statement.

Australian players
Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon, and Mitchell Starc of Australia (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

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“Pretty Self explanatory.” This was Cameron Bancroft‘s response when asked, in a recent interview, if the Australian bowlers had knowledge about him tampering the ball. This has opened up the old wounds once again after three long years. Bancroft, Steve Smith and David Warner diligently served their respective suspensions but the recent comments led to Cricket Australia inviting Bancroft to give more details on the matter.

Also, the former cricketers from Australia and other countries, along with the media, have also weighed in on their opinions with majority of them stating that the bowlers would’ve definitely known about it. This has certainly not gone down well with the bowling attack that played in the Newlands Test in 2018. Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins and Nathan Lyon played that game and are still feature together in Tests.

All the four bowlers have released a joint statement, addressing to the Austrlaian public, clarifying that they had no idea about the ball being tampered with on the field and only came to know about on the big screen while playing. The quartet is also disappointed that their integrity has been questioned despite facing the wrath of the matter back then.

In the statement released on Mitchell Starc’s website (mitchstarc56.com), it is also highlighted that the umpires checked the condition of the ball and decided not to change it.

It is time to move on, says Aussie bowlers in the statement

The bowlers have stated, in their statement, that the team and Australian cricket has learned the hard lessons through the incident. They also pointed out the way the Australian team and players have played their game with utmost respect, more so, since then. In the end, the quartet of the bowlers requested the fans to put an end to the matter and reckoned it is better to move on.

Here’s the whole statement:

To The Australian Public

We pride ourselves on our honesty. So it’s been disappointing to see that our integrity has been questioned by some journalists and past players in recent days in regard to the Cape Town Test of 2018.

We have already answered questions many times on this issue, but we feel compelled to put the key facts on the record again:

  • We did not know a foreign substance was taken onto the field to alter the condition of the ball until we saw the images on the big screen at Newlands
  • And to those who, despite the absence of evidence, insist that ‘we must have known’ about the use of a foreign substance simply because we are bowlers, we say this: The umpires during that Test match, Nigel Llong and Richard Illingworth, both very respected and experienced umpires, inspected the ball after the images surfaced on the TV coverage and did not change it because there was no sign of damage.

None of this excuses what happened on the field that day at Newlands. It was wrong and it should never have happened.

We’ve all learned valuable lessons and we’d like to think the public can see a change for the better in terms of the way we play, the way we behave and respect the game. Our commitment to improving as people and players will continue.

We respectfully request an end to the rumour-mongering and innuendo.

It has gone on too long and it is time to move on.


Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Mitch Starc, Nathan Lyon