Bancroft has moved on after a tough 12 months. Picture: Getty
Bancroft has moved on after a tough 12 months. Picture: Getty

Remorseful Bancroft ready for England’s boo birds

Cameron Bancroft accepts he is powerless to change people's perceptions of him but feels "living in the past is unhealthy for anybody" ahead of his county cricket bow for Durham.

Bancroft's promising Test career was put on hold in March last year when he was given a nine-month suspension by Cricket Australia for attempting to manipulate the ball with sandpaper during a Test against South Africa in Cape Town.

The ramifications have been widespread, with Australia captain Steve Smith and his deputy David Warner handed year-long bans for their roles in the notorious ball-tampering scandal.

Bancroft is therefore braced for any hostile receptions he may face around county grounds in England this summer but is sanguine about the prospect.

Speaking ahead of his Durham debut against Sussex on Thursday, Bancroft said: "I can't change how people are going to react and how people are going to feel, that's completely up to them.

"I respect that. As long as I'm just really enjoying and focused on what I can control, that's all that matters.

"At some point you've got to move forward. That's not saying you don't honour and respect what's happened in the past.

"But at some point you need to be able to take steps to move forward. Living in the past is unhealthy for anybody."

Cameron Bancroft has already made a strong return to four-day cricket with Western Australia. Picture: AAP
Cameron Bancroft has already made a strong return to four-day cricket with Western Australia. Picture: AAP
 

There have been accusations in some quarters of the controversy being unresolved and that there are questions that still need answering despite a Cricket Australia investigation.

Bancroft, though, made it clear that while he has erred in the past, he is eager to look forward ahead of a county season in which he will captain Durham in the championship and the Royal London One-Day Cup.

He added: "We all make mistakes and I guess it's how you're able to grow as a person, in admitting and being honest with yourself about those mistakes.

"I certainly have been and as a person that's something that I'm completely accountable for and I wouldn't have it any other way.

"I've had moments where I've been really flat and really down, you're a in a grieving process.

Rock bottom: Cameron Bancroft (left) sits with then captain Steve Smith at their infamous press conference. Picture: Getty
Rock bottom: Cameron Bancroft (left) sits with then captain Steve Smith at their infamous press conference. Picture: Getty

"But once you take steps forward to achieving little milestones along the way, you start to come out the other end and that changes another day.

"That's life: we're down in the dumps at some points and then we've got to resurge and find a way, and that just happens over and over again. I feel far more relaxed with things now."

Asked whether he had a message for Durham's fans, he added: "I'm Cameron, I play cricket, I made a really poor mistake last year and I'm very sorry for that. I look forward to saying 'G'day', shaking your hand and signing all your stuff."