The ball-tampering controversy in the recently-concluded Champions Trophy continues to rankle English cricketers with batsman Ravi Bopara calling the allegations, made by former captain Bob Willis, “annoying sad and depressing”.

“We were doing well in that tournament and I felt it was unacceptable to make that sort of noise. It was annoying, sad and depressing, especially in the middle of a global competition,” Bopara told London Evening Standard

English players were accused of tampering with the ball by Willis after umpire Aleem Dar changed the ball during their group match against Sri Lanka something, which the hosts did not seem to like during the game.

“When England is doing well, why does something negative have to come from it? Why not just get on the wave with England and enjoy it?” he asked.

Willis, a commentator on Sky Sports, had stated that Dar was “on England’s case” during the incident.

“We’ve learned over the last 12-18 months that we need to look after the white ball as well as we do the red ball. We discussed as a team how we were going to shine it. You have to look after them to make them ‘talk’,” Bopara said.

“You want that seam to be standing up as long as possible; you want one side to be very smooth, which helps with lateral movement. If you can make the red ball swing, you should be able to do the same with the white one,” he explained.

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