Australia vice-captain David Warner and South Africa wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock have been charged by the International Cricket Council for their involvement in a stairwell altercation during the fourth day of the first Test at Kingsmead, Durban.
While Warner was charged for breaching Level 2 of the ICC Code of Conduct, De Kock was charged with a Level 1 offence for the same breach.
Since the Level 2 charge brings 3-4 demerit points and up to 100 per cent fine of a player’s match fee, Warner might have to face the suspension from the second Test, scheduled to start on March 9 in Port Elizabeth. It is worth mentioning here that four demerit points result in missing a Test match or two limited-overs internationals, whichever comes first.
Dramatic video footage of that ugly altercation emerged on Monday (March 5) in which Warner can be seen pointing and directing a verbal barrage at De Kock, before he was restrained and taken away by his teammates.
If the reports of Australian media outlets are to be believed, the fracas had been ignited by De Kock, who passed some derogatory remarks on Warner's wife Candice. However, South African media allege that Warner started the scuffle by taking pot shots at De Kock's family members and termed the Proteas glovesman as "bush pig".
The incident has been condemned by former Australia cricketer Adam Gilchrist, while South Africa's team manager said it was "not in the spirit of the game."
Addressing the media after the match, Australia skipper Steve Smith has accused De Kock of starting the whole fracas by getting personal with Warner.
"Quinton got quite personal and provoked an emotional response from Davey. As far as I am aware we didn't get personal toward Quinton,” Steve Smith told reporters on Monday.
On the other hand, Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis said the 25-year-old De Kock was unaffected by the incident.
"When you look at him now, it's like nothing happened. Quinny's fine. I don't think you'd get a reaction out of Quinton anyway, most of the time,” Du Plessis had said in the media conference.