Bengaluru, May 17: Australian opener David Warner's manager James Erskine has taken a dig at the country's cricket administrators, alleging his client, former captain Steve Smith and Cameron Bancroft were treated despicably by Cricket Australia (CA) while they investigated the 2018 ball-tampering episode.
Erskine said they did not deserve the punishment -- one-year ban for Smith and Warner and nine-month suspension for Bancroft -- for their role in the scandal during the 2018 Cape Town Test against South Africa.
"The report that was done, they (CA) didn't interview all the players. The whole thing was so badly handled, it was a joke. But eventually the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, will come out, and I know the whole truth," Erskine was quoted as saying by Sydney Morning Herald daily.
"But it doesn't serve any purpose because the Australian public over a period of time got to dislike the Australian team because they didn't behave particularly well."
The ball-tampering fiasco in South Africa had led to a review of Australia's win-at-all-cost team culture, besides the ban on the three players.
"There's absolutely no doubt that Smith, Warner and Bancroft were treated despicably. The fact of the matter is they did the wrong thing but the punishment didn't fit the crime. I think if one or two of those players had taken legal action they would've won because of what the truth was," Erskine added.
Erskine's reaction came after Bancroft's recent statement on the infamous episode has once again brought the ball-tampering issue under the spotlight.
During an interview, Bancroft had hinted that bowlers might have known about the plot that made him and two others -- Smith and Warner -- pay a huge price.
CA immediately responded to the statement saying that it was ready to re-investigate into the whole episode.
Meanwhile, former captain Michael Clarke said he will not be surprised if it comes to light that more players were aware of the ball-tampering plot as he accused CA of sweeping the issue under the carpet.
(With PTI inputs)