Australian cricketer Steve Smith has been accused of shadow-batting at the crease and scuffle out the guard marks made by Indian cricketer Rishabh Pant, on the fifth and final day of the 3rd India vs Australia Test at the SCG on Monday. The Indian batsman, whose counter-attacking 97 pushed the hosts on the backfoot, was then seen asking the umpire for a fresh guard, before play resumed again. The incident happened after the drinks break in the first session of the final day. Just before play resumed, the stump cam caught Smith shadow bat on the pitch and scruffing up the batsman’s mark.
Pant then walked into the pitch and asked for a fresh guard. The incident was not shown on Australian coverage, with replays being shown instead. Smith has faced criticism on social media for scruffing up Pant’s crease. “Once a cheat, always a cheat,” said one Twitter user. “I have lost respect for Smith and Paine,” said another. The incident comes close on heels of the racist abuse hurled towards Indian players Mohammad Siraj and Jasprit Bumrah by the drunk Australian fans in the stadium. The series is currently tied at 1-1, with the SCG Test to decide who goes up in the series before the 4th and last Test later this week. Cricket fans were upset over Steve Smith’s action. They slammed the Australian cricketer who was earlier accused tampering ball and subsequently banned from all forms of domestic and international cricket for a year in 2018.
Shame on Steve Smith.. @stevesmith49. After 1 year ban cheaters always remains cheaters.He should be punished and give him life ban from playing cricket..Australians are known for that otherwise how they can win ?— Falgun Patel (@Falgun1872) January 11, 2021
Australians Abuse, cheat .They're really badass.#INDvAUS#AUSvIND
So much desperation being shown. Really bad sportsmanship here by Steve Smith. The respect for them is going down day by day. Not even sure whether this is within the rules, or not.#AUSvINDhttps://t.co/rfqhIrDGKH— Sohom 💫🏏🎬 (@mastiyaapa) January 11, 2021