March 28, 2018 / 11:48 PM / 3 months ago

Cricket-ASICS drops Warner, Bancroft over ball-tampering incident

SYDNEY, March 29 (Reuters) - Sports apparel maker ASICS Corp cancelled sponsorship deals with Australian cricketers David Warner and Cameron Bancroft on Thursday after a ball-tampering scandal that resulted in lengthy bans from the sport.

Vice-captain Warner and captain Steve Smith were banned from international and domestic cricket for 12 months for their role in a scandal that has rocked the sport, Cricket Australia said late on Wednesday.

Bancroft, who was caught on camera attempting to scuff up the ball with improvised sandpaper during a test in Cape Town, was banned for nine months. All three were sent home from South Africa.

“As a result of last weekend’s events in Cape Town involving members of the Australian men’s cricket team and following the sanctions made by Cricket Australia, ASICS has terminated its sponsorship contracts with David Warner and Cameron Bancroft, effective immediately,” the company said on its official Twitter feed on Thursday.

The company did not give further details about its decision, and did not immediately respond to an email requesting comment.

ASICS was the second sponsor in two days to abandon Warner over the incident. Electronics maker LG had already said it would not be giving the 31-year-old a new sponsorship deal.

Several of Cricket Australia’s major sponsors, including cereal maker Sanitarium, have said they would await the results of a full investigation into the scandal before deciding on the future of their deals with the governing body.

Sanitarium was not immediately available for comment on Thursday. (Reporting by Byron Kaye Editing by Paul Tait)

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