Vodafone Australia is using the shame of the nation's cricket ball-tampering scandal as the theme of its new 'Gutsy is calling' advertising campaign.
The telco's minute-long ad tells the story of now-banned captain Steve Smith and includes news footage from the ordeal in which he and teammates David Warner and Cameron Bancroft were suspended.
Contrite: Steve Smith has used a commercial to voice his experiences since the sandpaper scandal.Credit:Cricket Network
The trio were all handed down bans by Cricket Australia for their roles in the ball-tampering scandal in the third Test against South Africa in Cape Town in March.
In the ad, Smith talks about honesty, fronting up to mistakes and overcoming difficult times and is filmed doing so in soft-lit scenes where he is seen with schoolchildren and back out in the middle playing club cricket.
"Everything I dreamed of, everything I was a part of was just falling to pieces,” Smith says in the commercial.
“I was in a pretty dark space. It was just about being upfront and honest and taking responsibility.
“I’ve certainly had some difficult days. But it’s OK to be vulnerable. Everyone makes mistakes; it's about the way you respond to it that's really important."
It concludes with Smith stating: "I want to come back better than I was."
Smith's staring role in the commercial comes on the back of him teaming up with Australian television and radio personality Gus Worland as an ambassador in the Gotcha4Life school programme.
Gotcha4Life teaches teenage boys the importance of opening up and having courageous conversations.
The commercial also features Smith playing for his beloved Sutherland Cricket Club and talking about the challenges and struggles he has faced since the ball tampering scandal.
It also includes footage from his emotional press conference immediately after the controversy.
Smith has referred directly to some of the toughest moments in the ad spot.Credit:Janie Barrett
Cricket Australia's sanctions for Smith, Warner and Bancroft for their part in the ball-tampering scandal prevent them from playing international and Australian domestic cricket, but not club cricket.
Smith and Warner will be eligible for national selection again in March and Bancroft from December 30 after serving a shorter nine-month ban.
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