Banned Aussie batsman Cameron Bancroft dismissed for one run in cricket return after ball-tampering saga

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AAP

He was dismissed cheaply but nothing could wipe the smile from Cameron Bancroft's face.

Cameron Bancroft of Australia talks to the umpire on the third day of the third cricket test between South Africa and Australia at Newlands Stadium, in Cape Town, South Africa, Saturday, March 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Halden Krog)

The umpires speak to Cameron Bancroft (left), who admitted cheating, while his captain Steve Smith watches on.

Source: Associated Press

Batting in the Top End in his first match since the ball-tampering fiasco, the 25-year-old was simply enjoying playing cricket again.

Playing at another 'MCG' - Marrara Cricket Ground in Darwin, it was certainly a long way from his last outing for Australia in Cape Town back in March.

But given that Test ended in ignominy with Bancroft suspended for nine months and his teammates Steve Smith and David Warner a year each, that was perhaps no bad thing.

Bancroft said he'd endured a personal crisis and ridden a wave of emotion since he was caught ball tampering in South Africa.

And he was simply glad to be back.

"I felt pretty relaxed out there to be honest. To get back into some cricket is really exciting," he told reporters after the match.

Bancroft said he looked forward to forming new friendships playing with the Desert Blaze team, helping mentor young cricketers around the NT in dealing with adversity - something he is well familiar with.

"That's what cricket is all about, meeting different people. I've played for a lot of different teams around the world now and the friendships you make with these guys is really important," he said.

"I think a beautiful thing about the last few months is I have certainly learned to appreciate and been grateful for what you do have."

Bancroft said he has spent time with a bowling machine at home in Perth and plans to keep working on his batting in Darwin.

He wants to play Test cricket again but understands he's no walk up start even when his suspension has been served.

"Like I did leading up to getting selected last summer; I had to earn it and I had to work hard for it and I would expect nothing less," he said.

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