England suspected Aussie ball-tampering during the Ashes

English paceman Stuart Broad has hinted he believes Australia were involved in ball-tampering during the recent Ashes series.

England were suspicious of how Australia's bowlers managed to achieve consistent reverse swing during the series - and now they have confessed to cheating against South Africa, questions are being raised by England's players.

Australian cricket was thrown into turmoil on Sunday (NZ time) after fielder Cameron Bancroft admitted he had used sticky tape to affect the surface of the ball during the third test against the Proteas.

After Bancroft admitted to cheating, video and images emerged of potential ways Australia may have ball-tampered during the Ashes.

Concerns centred on David Warner polishing the ball at with his left hand covered in strapping which could be used to help scuff up the ball.

David Warner.
David Warner. Photo credit: Reuters

But the primary concern is around Bancroft after a video emerged of him spooning sugar into his hand and then putting it in his pocket before going on the pitch during the fifth test in Sydney. 

"I saw Steve Smith in his press conference said it was the first time they've tried it, which to me, seems really surprising why they'd change a method that's been working," said Broad after day four of the day-night test against New Zealand.

"Look at the Ashes series that we've just played. You look through virtually all of those Tests, and they reverse swung the ball in conditions that you wouldn't expect the ball to reverse.

"I don't understand why they've changed their method for this one game. There was no evidence that they were doing this in the Ashes series, from what I've seen."

The ICC later banned captain Steve Smith from the fourth test and withheld his entire match fee, while Bancroft was fined 75 percent of his match fee and handed three demerit points.

The series between Australia and South Africa has had its fair share of controversy, with vice-captain Warner involved in a 'stairway-stoush' with Quinton de Kock during the first test.

Things also got heated during the second test, when Kagiso Rabada got in the face of Australian players when he got them out.

Broad added he found it funny Australia were complaining about the sledging when they are the best at it.

"I've always been a bit of a believer, in sport... if someone wants to take you on verbally, and they've started that fight, then you're allowed to say something back.

"Just from the outside, it looks like Australia have started a lot of fights and are moaning when someone comes back.

"Any England player that has toured Australia can laugh at those comments really, because some of the comments we hear on the pitch by Australian supporters... it's worse than South Africa."


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