Former Australian vice-captain David Warner arrived back in Sydney overnight, after issuing an online apology where he expressed regret for his role in the ball-tampering scandal.
Warner was met at Sydney airport by his wife Candice and two young daughters, and told assembled media he would make further statements in due course, the SMH reports.
“As you can understand it’s been a tough and emotional time for my wife and the kids,” Warner said.
“At this present time, you’ll hear from me in a couple of days. At the moment my priorities are to get these kids in bed, rest up and let my mind be clear so I can think.”
Earlier, Warner posted a message on Twitter apologising for his actions.
“Mistakes have been made which have damaged the game of cricket,” Warner wrote.
“I understand the distress this has caused the sport and its fans. I apologise for my part and take responsibility for it.”
Warner’s arrival home follows that of former Australian captain Steve Smith, who poured his heart out in an emotional press conference on Thursday.
Smith said his role in the ball-tampering scandal — where sandpaper was used to rough up the ball during the third Test against South Africa — was a decision he’ll regret for the rest of his life.
In addition to their 12-month ban, both players have lost sponsorships and seen their lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) contracts cancelled. The third player involved, Cameron Bancroft, was handed a nine-month suspension.
Cricket Australia is also under fire, after major sponsor Magellan Financial Group terminated its three-year contract yesterday. And Australian coach Darren Lehmann announced that he would step down in the wake of the scandal.
According to the SMH, it’s unclear whether Warner will appeal the decision but sources close to him said his view is that more than just three players were involved in the scandal.
Statements from the Australian Cricketers Association (ACA) — the player’s union — indicated there may be grounds for a potential appeal.
The ACA said the sanctions issued were considerably harsher than those issued by the International Cricket Council, and also suggested that Cricket Australia may have acted outside of its scope in handing down the penalties.
For now, Warner has another five days to contest either the basis of his suspension or the severity of the penalty.
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