Proteas

Warner: No idea what sparked Tahir tiff

2016-10-13 07:06
Imran Tahir (Gallo)

Cape Town - Wednesday's final ODI between South Africa and Australia was not short on quality as two sparkling centuries - one from Rilee Rossouw and one from David Warner - made for a memorable clash. 

The Proteas won relatively comfortably in the end to claim a 5-0 series whitewash as the sides now turn their attention to a three-match Test series in Australia starting on November 3. 

The rivalry between these two sides has always been intense, with a sledge here and there common place. 

On Sunday in Port Elizabeth, it was Tabraiz Shamsi and Matthew Wade having a mini-altercation. 

But, with all due respect to those two, on Wednesday at Newlands it was the battle of the heavyweights. 

After Australia had gotten off to a quality start, Imran Tahir had put the breaks on with two wickets in his first over when he bowled Aaron Finch and then Steve Smith. 

Tahir was pumped up, to say the least. 

Both of those wickets saw him jet off around the ground in what has now become his trademark celebration. 

But then it all got a bit nasty in the 37th over when Tahir clashed with Warner. 

The Proteas had just had a review for an lbw shout against Warner turned down - Tahir the bowler. 

Soon after that the two started having a go at each other, with Tahir clearly irked by something. 

Exactly what sparked the exchange is unclear, but it carried on for a few overs and required the intervention of umpire Joel Wilson on numerous occasions.

"What happens on the field, happens on the field," Warner, who smashed 173, said.

"I honestly have no idea what sparked it ... I'm still trying to work it out. For the first time in my life, I didn't say anything."

There was a touching moment when, at the end of Tahir's spell (2/42), Warner went over to offer his congratulations. 

There was a brief embrace, but the look on Tahir's face suggested that he was still fired up. 

"Immy wears his heart on his sleeve," Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis said.

"He loves doing well. I haven't seen him like that, but it just shows how badly he wanted to win the game tonight.

"He realised that David Warner was playing a great knock and he had to maybe try and get under his skin and the two of them had a few words. That's cricket; that's competitive nature. 

"Dave is trying to win a game for his country and so is Imran so I don't see anything wrong with that.

"The great thing was that when Immy was done Dave put a hand over the shoulder and said 'let's have a beer afterwards'. That, for me, is the spirit of the game. Immy is obviously going to have a glass of water, but it's the thought that counts."

Du Plessis was also full of praise for Tahir's performance, which swung the momentum of the match back in South Africa's favour.

"He's an absolute gun. Immy is the reason why we are where are as an ODI side," Du Plessis said.

"He's been so consistent over the last few years ... he's won me plenty of games."

Read more on:    proteas  |  david warner  |  imran tahir  |  cape town  |  cricket
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