No ill-will lingering from 2018: Australia

December 13, 2022 10:44 AM AEDT | By AAPNEWS
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Australia claim they do not need to address behavioural standards ahead of the Test series against South Africa, with team management adamant any bad blood from the 2018 tour is long gone.

Infamous because of the Cape Town ball-tampering scandal, Australia's visit to South Africa four years ago remains one of the most dramatic tours in cricket history.

Flashpoints included a stairwell altercation between David Warner and Quinton de Kock, along with claims Kagiso Rabada shoulder charged Steve Smith after a wicket.

Accusations have also recently been thrown both ways by former captains Faf du Plessis and Tim Paine of more cases of ball-tampering.

Six of Australia's 2018 touring party will play at the Gabba on Saturday, while Josh Hazlewood is hopeful of returning from injury later in the series.

Coach Andrew McDonald was not there, but said the current Australian team would not seek to reignite that fight.

"We're not sure what's happening inside the walls of the South African dressing room, but within the walls of ours you wouldn't notice any distractions," McDonald told reporters. "We move forward.

"People are critiquing that we need to address things on the inside. We've moved on from that.

"The noise that's on the outside, that's definitely not on the inside."

The 2018 series became a turning point for Australian cricket, with the fall-out from the ball-tampering saga prompting cultural reviews into the entire sport.

Australia's behaviour since then has largely been unblemished, with the team adopting a choirboy approach on the field with the exception of a few tense moments against India.

South Africa captain Dean Elgar also insisted on arrival in Australia alongside six other players from the 2018 series that the animosity had subsided, although he did predict some "spice".

Regardless, McDonald said his players did not need to be reminded how to react if the Proteas attempted to aggravate them on field.

"We're clear on the way we want to play, and we don't want to talk about that," McDonald said.

"Hopefully it's been evident in the way we've gone about it, to the people who are watching us. They're the people who are critiquing us.

"You should see a clear style in the way that we want to play. And you'll see the same again."


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