Durban - Personal
insults were at the root of a row between Australia's David Warner and
South Africa's Quinton de Kock during the tea break of the fourth day of
the first Test, their captains said.
READ: David Warner restrained after alledged Quinton de Kock barb about wife
The incident is in the hands of match referee Jeff Crowe, with no immediate clarity about when a decision could be expected.
CCTV footage showed Warner apparently turning on De Kock as the
players walked up a narrow staircase leading to the dressing rooms at
the start of the interval in Durban in a match won by Australia.
SCORECARD: Australia win 1st Test by 118 runs
"What was said and done during that interval was regrettable on both sides," said Australian captain Steve Smith.
"Quinton got personal and evoked an emotional response from Davey.
Those things are not on from both sides. Getting personal on the field
is crossing the line in my opinion."
However, Smith's version was disputed by South African manager Mohammed Moosajee, who blamed Warner.
"There were words said out on the field. If you are saying something
you’ve got to take it and that’s the opinion of Quinton. Let the
investigations begin and let the match officials decide," said Moosajee.
READ: Graeme Smith labels David Warner a 'fool'
South African captain Faf du Plessis said the umpires needed to ensure proper behaviour on the field.
"From what I've heard there was a lot of personal stuff being said,
to and from. Who started it, I don't know. If it was happening on the
field it should have been nipped in the bud.
"The fact that it spilled over after the field shouldn’t have happened."
The CCTV footage shows Warner being
restrained by team-mates Usman Khawaja and Nathan Lyon before being
persuaded to go into the dressing room by Smith.
Du Plessis said he had been aware of the incident.
"I heard the
commotion and went outside and just asked David to go into his dressing
room. It needs to stay on the field when you are chirping each other.
There need to be boundaries on that."
Smith acknowledged his players were "certainly very chirpy on the field".
But he said that as far as he aware his players had not got personal with De Kock.
Smith said he hoped the remaining three Tests would be played in the
right spirit but added: "We play our best cricket when we're aggressive,
when we’re in the fight together and hunting as a pack as one. We're
working for each other and backing our mates up in the field. That's
part of being an Australian."
He said there had been "regrettable incidents from both parties" but hoped for better behaviour in the next three Tests.
"I’m not going to say nothing will ever happen again but as far as
I'm concerned we've just got to try and play within the spirit of the
Du Plessis said he expected aggression from the opposition when he
played against Australia.
"I’m certainly not sitting here complaining
about it. I was disappointed to see the way it unfolded yesterday, but I
expect a tough series and I look forward to the battle."
According to Du Plessis, De Kock was unaffected by the incident.
"Quinny’s fine. I don’t think you get a reaction from him most of the
time. When you look at him now it’s like nothing happened."
Meanwhile, Australian off-spinner Lyon was charged with conduct
contrary to the spirit of the game after he dropped the ball next to AB
de Villiers after completing a runout of South Africa's star batsman, an
incident captured on television.
Lyon was expected to be fined or penalised with a demerit point for
what is classified as a level one offence. He was said to have
apologised to De Villiers and the pair were seen shaking hands while the
teams warmed up on Monday.