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ICC looking into heated off-field exchange at Durban

The video shows Warner being restrained by Australia batsman Usman Khawaja and spin bowler Nathan Lyon as he directs a verbal barrage at De Kock.

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David Warner sledges Quinton de Kock
David Warner sledges Quinton de Kock. (Photo Source: Twitter)

The International Cricket Council (ICC) are looking into a heated off-field exchange between players on day four of the first test against South Africa in Durban on Sunday. In a CCTV footage that surfaced after the end of play on Day 4, the heated exchange in the players’ tunnels at Kingsmead showed Australia vice-captain David Warner and home wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock involved in a fiery exchange as players climbed the stairwell to their dressing rooms during the tea break.

The video shows Warner being restrained by Australia batsman Usman Khawaja and spin bowler Nathan Lyon as he directs a verbal barrage at De Kock, who left the field as South Africa’s not-out batsman at the same time as the Australians. Australia wicketkeeper Tim Paine also intervened to block Warner before his captain Steve Smith ushers the opening batsman away.

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While the on-field incidents like Warner giving a mouthful to Aiden Markram and Nathan Lyon dropping the ball on AB de Villiers’ chest were all played down by both sides, both the respective boards will take the off-field incident seriously.

Against the spirit of the game: Moosajee

“It’s rather unfortunate that the incident took place and certainly not in the spirit of the game,” South Africa’s team manager Mohammed Moosajee told reporters.

“The match referee had spoken to us after the day’s play. We will await any further communication from the ICC around this incident.” Cricket Australia (CA) said it was also looking into the incident. “CA is aware of reports of an incident between players in Durban,” a spokesperson for the Australian governing body said, as reported by Reuters.

“CA is working to establish the facts of what has occurred and will not be commenting further until that has been done.” Former South Africa captain Graeme Smith criticised Warner as “a bit of a fool” and “like a fly buzzing around your head” but Markram, who went on to play a lone hand of 143 in an attempt to save the match, sportingly dismissed the sledging as part of the game.

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