Qantas Tour of South Africa
Staircase incident with match referee
South Africa team manager issues statement on leaked footage of Warner-de Kock altercation during first Test
5 March 2018, 09:48 PM AEST
Cricket Australia has confirmed both teams were reminded by match referee Jeff Crowe of the "spirit in which the game should be played" following an altercation between David Warner and Quinton de Kock on Sunday.
CCTV footage from the staircase leading to the dressing rooms at Kingsmead in Durban emerged on Monday morning that showed the Australia vice-captain and the South Africa wicketkeeper involved in a heated exchange at tea on day four of the first Test.
Both CA and Cricket South Africa have said the matter is now in the hands of the International Cricket Council. CSA also suggested the incident was "not in the spirit of the game".
A CA spokesperson said: "Following the end of the second session there was an incident involving David Warner and Quinton de Kock on return to the changerooms.
"The incident was discussed between the two team managers and the match referee last night and it is now in the hands of the on-field umpires and match referee.
"Both teams were reminded by the match referee of the spirit in which the game should be played."
It was reported by various media outlets that de Kock had allegedly made personal comments about Warner's wife, Candice.
"It's rather unfortunate that the incident took place and certainly not in the spirit of the game," Proteas team manager Dr Mohammed Moosajee said.
"The match referee had spoken to us after the day's play. We will await any further communication from the ICC around this incident."
After two sessions of intense cricket, during which Warner was at the centre of an exuberant Australian celebration following the run-out of AB de Villiers – a reaction that sparked criticism from former Proteas skipper Graeme Smith – emotions appeared to boil over as the players made their way to their respective dressing rooms.
It is unknown what prompted the exchange, nor how the vision was surfaced publicly.
The footage surfaced overnight in South Africa, and players and officials in Durban would have woken to the widespread media coverage.
Warner looked to be aggressively directing his words to de Kock, who had left the field of play at the same time as the Australians as one of two not out batsmen at tea.
The Australian was held back from moving towards the Proteas' wicketkeeper-batsman by Usman Khawaja, and later Tim Paine, before he was ushered away from the scene by captain Steve Smith.
Nathan Lyon has since been charged by the ICC for his involvement in de Villiers run-out celebration after dropping the ball in the South African's vicinity.
De Villiers took to Twitter to remark "this series will be one to remember" in response to a tweet containing the leaked CCTV footage and calling on Morne Morkel and Kagiso Rabada to deliver "a bit of chin music".
This series will be one to remember— AB de Villiers (@ABdeVilliers17) March 5, 2018
In his post-stumps press conference, Proteas centurion Aiden Markram, who had been at least partly responsible for the de Villiers run-out, defended the aggression of the Australians in the field, saying their sledging "never really gets out of line".
"It's natural when you play against the Australians that there's a lot of chatter on the field.
"I certainly don't mind. It never really gets out of line either, not a lot of swearing or things like that happen.
"There are a few here and there, but it's not the end of the world. I believe it's part of the game.
"That's how it should be played, nice and hard, and it makes success that bit more rewarding."
Paine agreed with Markram's summation, adding that the on-field verbals had been designed to put Markram off his game – a tactic that ultimately failed as the young opener brought up a third hundred in just his seventh Test match.
"There wasn't too much aggression," Paine said. "We spoke to Aiden about running out their best player and one of the best players in the world.
"Had someone had run 'Smithy' (Steve Smith) out in our team you'd cop a fair bit of a ribbing.
"It was nothing aggressive; it was just reminding him of what he had just done, trying to get him off his game, the same as they do to us.
"(It) didn't work."
Cricket.com.au has sought further comment from the ICC.
Qantas tour of South Africa
South Africa squad: Faf du Plessis (c), Hashim Amla, Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock, Theunis de Bruyn, AB de Villiers, Dean Elgar, Heinrich Klaasen, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Morne Morkel, Wiaan Mulder, Lungi Ngidi, Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada.
Australia squad: Steve Smith (c), David Warner (vc), Cameron Bancroft, Pat Cummins, Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazlewood, Jon Holland, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Tim Paine, Jhye Richardson, Chadd Sayers, Mitchell Starc.
Warm-up match: Australia beat South Africa A by five wickets. Report, highlights
First Test Australia won by 118 runs. Scorecard
Second Test St George's Park, Port Elizabeth, March 9-13. Live coverage
Third Test Newlands, Cape Town, March 22-26. Live coverage
Fourth Test Wanderers, Johannesburg, March 30-April 3. Live coverage