<
>

'For me personally it was just really weird. It was so random'

play
WATCH - Bancroft on the headbutt: the most unlikely debut press conference? (4:30)

Cameron Bancroft responds to all the questions about Jonny Bairstow's headbutting incident and Steven Smith couldn't stop laughing (4:30)

The full transcript of the post-match press conference from the Gabba which was dominated by something that happened a month ago Perth but reared its head on the fourth day of the opening Test

Cameron, well done on the innings, but can you talk us through the incident from what you remember?

Cameron Bancroft: I remember it very clearly. We'd just won a Shield game for WA. One of our values is celebrate success at the same time that coincided with the English team arriving in Perth for the tour game. It was very friendly mingling the whole night. Obviously some of our players knew some of the English players. As the night progressed, it was great to be able to meet some of those guys. I got into a very amicable conversation with Jonny and, yeah, he just greeted me with a headbutt kind of thing. I was expecting a handshake, but it wasn't the greeting of choice that I was expecting. That was the way that I took it, there was certainly no malice in his action. We continued on having a very good conversation for the rest of the evening.

Did he apologise to you that night or subsequently?

CB: Yeah, like obviously at the time he said sorry. For me personally it was just really weird. It was so random, and I certainly didn't expect it coming. A handshake or a hug or something like that would have been something that I probably would have expected more than a headbutt. But as I said, there was certainly nothing malicious about his action and I just took it as, I don't know Jonny Bairstow but he says hello to people very differently to most others. We got along for the rest of the night quite well and I let it go and moved on from it, it was fine.

We would imagine a headbutt knocking someone over?

CB: He didn't knock me over. I've actually got the heaviest head in the West Australian squad. It's been measured. There's an actual measurement for it. I took the blow quite well and just moved on from it... it was a good hit, play on.

Trevor Bayliss said it was a long way from being a headbutt. He said there's a headbutt, and then there's what happened to you, and that a head-butt is totally different. So could you perhaps define, maybe on a one to ten basis, what happened to you?

CB: He connected with my head, with a force that would make me think, wow, that's a bit weird. That was it.

Was it the top of his head and it hit you in the nose, or what happened?

CB: Headbutts clash with heads, and when he made the decision to do that, it meant our heads collided.

Where did the top of his head hit your head?

CB: It hit my head, yeah. My head, yeah.

Steven Smith: Forehead.

CB: Forehead. There you go.

Steve, Joe Root said it was convenient timing that this incident was brought up on the first day you had a good day in the field. What are your thoughts on that?

SS: I think it was basically about trying to get Jonny off his game, to be honest with you. And I think it worked, with the way he got out. He got caught at third man playing a pretty ordinary stroke, to be fair. We were just trying to get in his head and it happened to work.

Cameron, you're making your Test debut for Australia. Is this how you envisaged your first press conference going?

CB: Not really, no. But look, it's all good humour, isn't it. I'll look back on this one day and it'll be a dot in my life and we'll live and learn and move on.

How has the experience been the last five days?

CB: It's been absolutely fantastic. It's an absolute dream to be able to play for Australia in Test cricket, and to be able to ride the waves of the week and then go through all the moments and experiences of the game, it's been absolutely fantastic and great to get a win with the guys. I know everyone's really excited and hopefully we can carry this momentum forward.

Steve, there's always a lot of posturing in Ashes cricket, but perhaps you guys get on well with your England counterparts - do you think this incident, even though Cam's explained there was no malice and there'll be no further action for Jonny, but the fact that England have had to explain themselves, bearing in mind the Ben Stokes situation in the background, do you think this will add genuine animosity out on the field?

SS: It's always played hard out on the field. We know there's a line that you're not to cross. I don't think it makes any real difference. We're going to continue to play the same way we have, nice and aggressively. This has been a really good week for us. I thought we played some really good cricket. We had to fight after the first couple of days and to get the result we were after is very pleasing. No doubt there'll continue to be some good, hard, aggressive cricket played throughout this series.

Steve, four years ago David Warner got rubbed out for two Ashes Tests for something that happened. Are you surprised that England would do nothing about this at all?

SS: That's not my decision. We deal with what happens with our team. ECB and Root and Bayliss can control what's happening in the England change room. That's really none of our business. We'll just go about our business as usual and prepare really well for what's going to be an exciting Test match in Adelaide.

Steve, on the cricket for a moment, chases around 170 can sometimes be mentally tricky, how impressed were you particularly with Cam on debut, but also David Warner, having no problems at all?

SS: They were magnificent. Cam was obviously disappointed in the first innings to miss out, but the way he came out in the second innings, he had really good plans, he left really well, played nice and straight, and put the loose ball away. Obviously Davey was playing his nice, free-flowing game at the other end. I thought they played particularly well, and to get a 10-wicket win is very satisfying.

Steve, there was a lot of negativity around the selection of this side during the week. Does that make it more satisfying that you've won the game by 10 wickets? And what is the potential for this team now to grow and develop?

SS: There was never any negativity from our side of things. We thought it was a very good selection. We were very happy with the team that we picked, and now it was just about performing. We've obviously performed really well in this game, after probably a bit of a shaky start. But I think this team has the potential to do some really good things. We'll have to continue to play really good cricket. Adelaide wicket might bring some of their bowlers into the game a little bit, but having said that it's probably one of the quickest wickets in the country at night. We saw how effective our bowlers could be when this wicket quickened up a little bit. That's exciting.

Steve, given it's four years on from Michael Clarke's 'broken arm' to Jimmy Anderson on the stump mic, and now we've got this situation with the headbutt comment. How concerned are the players with stump mic and what actually is going on on the field getting transferred into the media?

SS: We certainly have no intention of anyone outside the field knowing what's going on on the field, to be perfectly honest with you. I think in regards to the comments, that's all I can say there. But I think we've made our intentions pretty clear with how we're going to bowl to the tail. I think they know that as well. They can expect a bit more of a barrage I'd say.