Johannesburg, March 31 : Former Australian cricket vice captain David Warner has apologized for his role in the ball-tampering crisis that saw him suspended from the sport for 12 months.
Speaking publicly for the first time since the scandal emerged, Warner told reporters on Saturday that he has betrayed the trust of those who supported his cricket career, reports Xinhua news agency.
“To the fans and the lovers of the game, who have supported and inspired me on my journey as a cricketer, I want to sincerely apologise for betraying your trust in me,” Warner said.
“I have let you down badly. I hope in time I can find a way to repay for all you have given me and possibly earn your respect again.”
In an emotional press conference, Warner, 31, said he was taking “full responsibility for my part” in the scandal.
“We let our country down. We made a bad decision. I played my part in that,” Warner said.
“As I said it’s going to take a long time to earn that respect back from the Australian public.”
However, the dynamic opening batsman refused to answer questions about whether any other player or coach knew of the plan to use sandpaper to affect the condition of the ball.
Warner received a 12-month suspension and a lifetime ban from leadership positions in the Australian cricket team after a Cricket Australia (CA) investigation found that he initiated a plan to tamper with the ball on the third day of the third Test match in South Africa earlier in March.
Steve Smith, the former Australian captain, was also suspended for 12 months for his involvement in the plan while Cameron Bancroft, Warner’s partner opening the batting for Australia, received nine months for carrying out the plan.
Despite being cleared by the CA, coach Darren Lehmann has announced his resignation effective from the conclusion of the fourth and final Test against South Africa which begun on Friday.