Hashim Amla says he sympathises with Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft after they were banned for ball-tampering.
Smith and Warner will serve a 12-month ban for their involvement in the scandal, while Bancroft, who was caught red-handed, will serve nine months.
In a press conference on Wednesday, Amla said he felt sorry for them.
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‘We know how tough cricket is. It’s an international sport and so much work goes on behind the scenes.
‘When something like this happens, you definitely feel sympathy for the person it happened to. The three Australians made a mistake and have had to pay the price for it. We all make mistakes, we’re not perfect.’
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However, Amla admitted he was shocked by the episode.
‘It obviously gives every cricket team in the world a bit of a reality check,’ said Amla. ‘It allows you to ask yourself again: “What type of cricket do you want to play?”. It’s probably also given the International Cricket Council a lot more headaches in terms of codes of conducts and to help us determine where is “the line”.
‘I’ve always believed we’ve played our cricket the best we can with a few mistakes here and there. But you learn and move on.’