***MUST CREDIT PHOTOGRAPHER - Nasief Manie/WP Media*** 25 March 2018 Steve Smith Captain of Australia cricket team leaves the Cullinan Hotel for the Stadium wearing his cap and sunglasses to hide from the media on an overcast moring in Cape Town. Picture: Nasief Manie/WP Media
***MUST CREDIT PHOTOGRAPHER - Nasief Manie/WP Media*** 25 March 2018 Steve Smith Captain of Australia cricket team leaves the Cullinan Hotel for the Stadium wearing his cap and sunglasses to hide from the media on an overcast moring in Cape Town. Picture: Nasief Manie/WP Media

Lynn’s stunning claim: Everyone guilty of ball tampering

BIG Bash League star Chris Lynn admits ball tampering isn't the "Australian way", but insists it's more prevalent in cricket at all levels than horrified supporters might think.

Lynn refused to condemn banned Test skipper Steve Smith or any of the current players, saying "every cricketer" had engaged in the dark art at some point to differing degrees.

"I reckon every cricketer's probably done it throughout their career in grade cricket or whatever level. But obviously not to that extent," Lynn said.

Meanwhile, Jason Gillespie has savaged the Australian cricket team, saying Smith and Warner are gone as its leaders.

The highly-regarded Australian coach and former Test paceman said the national team must rebuild its reputation from scratch following the ball-tampering debacle.

Steve Smith needs to be sacked as skipper says Jason Gillespie. . Picture: Nasief Manie/WP Media
Steve Smith needs to be sacked as skipper says Jason Gillespie. . Picture: Nasief Manie/WP Media

"The brutal reality is that this team are seen as arrogant and all too quick to dictate 'the line' to others," Gillespie said. "The events over the weekend have exposed this as rank hypocrisy.

"Australian cricket will survive this and provided there is some honesty with the camp, it will hopefully emerge in better shape.

"New leaders will rise up and take the side forward. But it will not be Smith and it will not be Warner."

Gillespie called it a train wreck and it beggared belief that when Smith initially fronted the media over the ball tampering, he did not seem to grasp the severity of the issue.

Jason Gillespie says David Warner also needs to be removed from the leadership group.
Jason Gillespie says David Warner also needs to be removed from the leadership group.

"This was pre-planned cheating. It may have been implemented by a junior player in Cameron Bancroft but it came with the backing and knowledge of 'the leadership group', a core of senior guys in the Australian set-up," he added.

"The reputation of a team who were already drawing scorn for their behaviour has been torched."

Gillespie said it is crucial that the players in the leadership group were confirmed and there is certainty over whether team coaches were also involved.

"We need this information and we need it yesterday because I know of at least one senior player who is outraged that they have been dragged into the dirt by association without having been involved at all," he said.

Gillespie has sympathy for Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland and none for the players in the Test team.

"Is the Baggy Green tarnished as a result of this? That is possibly too extreme but certainly the current generation - Smith and his as yet unspecified leadership group - have made a grave error and one that will stay with them for a good while," he said.



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