Cricket Australia (CA) chief executive James Sutherland has urged the country to give disgraced trio Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft some space and time.
Smith and Bancroft wept with regret and shame on Thursday, repeatedly breaking down in apologetic press conferences upon their return home.
An emotional Warner, flanked by wife Candice and his two children, stopped briefly to speak with reporters at Sydney airport.
The cheating scandal has changed Australian cricket forever, while the lives of Smith, Warner and Bancroft will clearly never be the same.
The healing process won't formally start until the trio accept their long bans or successfully challenge the charges and/or sanctions.
Warner, having being fingered as the man behind the illegal ball-tampering plan, is understood to be mulling the merits of an appeal.
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Players have a further five days to consider their options. with Sutherland hoping the immense public interest wanes over Easter.
"I am sure everyone at home will understand the pressure and difficult situation of those players," Sutherland told reporters in Johannesburg.
"They are obviously in a very difficult and a very sad place.
"I politely ask that those in the public, and those specifically in the media, respect the privacy of the players and their families at what is obviously a very difficult time.
"They've made life-changing mistakes, but at the same time we should all support them and allow them to rehabilitate and get back playing the game they love."
Sutherland noted CA and the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) are both providing "all of the support we possibly can".
"All of the welfare services and the experts within our system, but also outside," he said.
Sutherland reiterated he would not resign over the saga that prompted coach Darren Lehmann to quit in tears.
Lehmann called on the public to forgive Smith, Warner and Bancroft.
"They've made a grave mistake but they are not bad people," Lehmann said.
"I hope the team rebuilds from this and the Australian public find it in their hearts to forgive these young men."
Former Prime Minister John Howard, who at one point CA wanted to become the International Cricket Council president, remains unimpressed with Smith's conduct.
"It's sad for the game, but also sad for young men who have made colossal mistakes," Howard said.
"They deserve their punishments.
"There must be a way back afterwards, but Smith can never be captain again. He is too weak."