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Steve Smith breaks down during a press conference after returning to Australia SYDNEY: When disgraced Australian cricketer Steve Smith faced the cameras in Sydney on Thursday with a tearful apology for a ball-tampering scandal, he joined a small club of sports stars who have very publicly said sorry. Athletes have played the penitent for everything from cheating at their sport to cheating on a wife; from pre-meditated assault on a rival to simply losing. Here are five high-profile mea culpas: Gianluigi Buffon - 2017 Fans reacted with shock and disbelief last year when Italy failed to qualify for the football World Cup for the first time since 1958 -- a failure dubbed an "apocalypse" by the nation´s press. "I´m not sorry for myself but all of Italian football," an inconsolable team captain Gianluigi Buffon said after the Azzuri missed out on qualification for the 2018 edition in Russia. "We failed at something which also means something on a social level. There´s regret at finishing like that, not because time passes." Buffon, one of the greatest goalkeepers of the modern era, also announced his retirement from international football after Sweden went through at Italy´s expense. Lance Armstrong - 2013 Cycling star Lance Armstrong admitted in a 2013 interview with Oprah Winfrey that he took performance-enhancing drugs during his glittering career. "I made my decisions. They´re my mistake. And I´m sitting here today to acknowledge that and to say I´m sorry for that," the seven-time Tour de France winner told Winfrey. The American cyclist and cancer-survivor had all his titles taken away over the scandal, which shattered his reputation as one of the most widely-admired athletes in the world for both his sporting achievements and his philanthropic work through the Livestrong Foundation. Tiger Woods - 2010 Golf superstar Tiger Woods went on national television in 2010 to apologise to his family after a string of scandalous disclosures about his private life, including the revelation that he was a serial cheat. "I know I have severely disappointed all of you. I have made you question who I am and how I have done the things I did. I am embarrassed that I have put you in this position," Woods said. "For all that I have done, I am so sorry. I have a lot to atone for." The scandal seriously damaged the American´s carefully-cultivated image, sent his sponsors fleeing and eventually ended his marriage. Marion Jones - 2007 US sprinter Marion Jones was sentenced to six months in jail and banned for two years for using performance-enhancing drugs before the 2000 Sydney Games -- and lying to US federal investigators. "It is with a great amount of shame that I stand before you and tell you that I have betrayed your trust," a tearful Jones said after pleading guilty to the charges in October 2007. "I have let (my family) down, I have let my country down, and I have let myself down." Jones was stripped of the three gold and two bronze medals she won in Sydney, and was also ordered to repay over $100,000 in prize and bonus money. Tonya Harding - 1994 American figure skater Tonya Harding was banished from the sport over an attack on rival Nancy Kerrigan, who had her knee bashed a month before the 1994 Winter Olympics. A visibly emotional Harding apologised a few months after the attack for not honestly reporting what she discovered about the plot -- hatched by her ex-husband -- but denied she had any prior knowledge. "Many of you will be unable to forgive me for that. It will be difficult to forgive myself," she said in a 1994 press statement, and appeared to choke up several times. Harding was later convicted of trying to cover up the conspiracy, which was the subject of the acclaimed 2017 film "I, Tonya".
FILE PHOTO: A Pakistani migrant threatens to hang himself from a utility pole during a demonstration inside the Moria registration centre on the Greek island of Lesbos, April 6, 2016. Photo: REUTERS/file ATHENS: A mental health emergency is unfolding in migrant camps on Greece?s islands, fueled by poor living conditions, neglect and violence, charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said on Tuesday. Medical staff have seen a sharp increase in people trying to get help after attempting suicide, harming themselves or suffering psychotic episodes, it said in a report. More than 13,000 migrants and refugees, mostly Syrians and Iraqis fleeing years of war, are living in five camps on Greek islands close to Turkey, government figures show. Four of those camps are holding two to three times as many people as they were designed for. ?Every day our teams treat patients who tell us that they would prefer to have died in their country than be trapped here,? said Jayne Grimes, manager of MSF?s mental health activities on the island of Samos. The charity said six or seven new patients had visited its clinic on the nearby island of Lesbos each week over the summer following suicide attempts, self-harm or psychotic episodes, 50 percent more than the previous three months. Violence which many experienced on the journey or in Greece was one factor aggravating mental distress, MSF said. ?I know I need to find hope, but when the night falls and I see where I am, I feel like I?m going crazy,? it quoted a Syrian man as saying. The 25-year-old said he was haunted by the images of people dying of hunger in front of him in the long-besieged town of Madaya. ?I still remember the taste of the leaves and the smell of death,? he said. On Samos, more than 3,000 people are crammed into facilities designed to hold 700, and about 400 live in the woods. In one Lesbos camp, about 1,500 people are in makeshift shelters or tents without flooring or heating, the U.N. refugee agency says. In August, MSF found nearly three-quarters of new mental health patients on Lesbos needed to be referred to a psychiatrist, up from just over a third in the nine months from October 2016 to June 2017. The report quoted a 41-year-old man, who said he had been tortured in a Syrian prison. When he visited a Lesbos hospital, he said he was told he would have to wait eight months to see a psychiatrist. ?When I heard that, I felt like dying,? he said. A 29-year-old Syrian woman, on Lesbos with her family, told the MSF researchers the uncertainty over the future was ?crushing us. It is killing us inside.? While the number of arrivals to Greece has slowed significantly since a European Union deal with Turkey to block the route in March last year, a recent sharp rise in arrivals has put pressure on government-run facilities.