Former Australian cricket captain, Steve Smith just fronted the press in Sydney tonight to apologise for the events that happened in Cape Town last Saturday.
An emotional Smith apologised to the sport, to his fans, his parents, and the country.
Smith’s father Peter stood beside him.
“As captain of the Australian cricket team, 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’ll do everything I can to make up for my mistake and the damage it caused. If any good can come of this, if it can be a lesson to others, then I hope I can be a force of change. I know I’ll regret this for the rest of my life, I’m absolutely gutted. I hope in time I can earn back respect and forgiveness. I’ve been so privileged and honoured to represent my country and captain the Australian cricket team. Cricket is the greatest game in the world, it’s been my life and I hope it can be again. I’m sorry and I’m absolutely devastated.”
Smith then answered questions, one was whether any cheating ever happened under Smith’s captaincy prior to Cape Town.
“To my knowledge, this has never happened. This is the first time I’ve seen this happened. I can assure you this will never happen again.”
Smith also said he didn’t blame David Warner or anyone for the events.
“I’m the captain of the Australian team, it’s on my watch and I take responsibility for the actions of what happened last Saturday in Cape Town.”
When a journalist asked about the impact the saga had on Smith as a role model to young children, Smith again deeply apologised for his actions before emotionally breaking down.
“Anytime 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 been… and my mum… it hurts…I just wanted to say I’m sorry for the pain that I’ve caused and brought to Australia and the fans and the public. It’s devastating and I’m truly sorry.”
This comes as Smith received a 12-month suspension from the game and he will not be eligible for the captaincy for another year after the ban.
Earlier in the evening, Cameron Bancroft spoke at a press conference and also apologised for his involvement in the ball-tampering.
“I feel like I’ve let everyone down in Australia, and I’m not proud of that. I know it’s going to take time to heal and to earn that respect back,” Bancroft said.
You can watch Smith’s full interview below.