South Africa A v Aus A, 1st unofficial Test, Pretoria, 4th day July 27, 2013

Warner altercation overshadows tame draw

ESPNcricinfo staff

Australia A 474 for 5 dec (Warner 193, Maxwell 155*) and 254 for 6 (Finch 88) drew with South Africa A 614 for 7 dec (Elgar 268, Tsolekile 159)
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

David Warner was again gaining attention for the wrong reasons as he found himself in yet another heated altercation, this time with South Africa A's wicketkeeper Thami Tsolekile. Warner got into a war of words with Tsolekile during the final day's play, with the pair having to be separated by South Africa A's Vaughn van Jaarsveld, and the umpires having to intervene.

Warner, however, termed the incident "friendly banter" as he took to Twitter after the match: "Great to be back playing cricket, had lots of fun this week and a bit of friendly banter from the wicket keeper. Was very funny!!"

With Australia currently embroiled in an Ashes series, Warner had been sent on Australia A's tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe with a focus on gaining meaningful match practice for the longer format, as he was suspended from playing the warm-ups leading up to the first Test following his altercation with Joe Root during the Champions Trophy. Only two days ago, Warner had admitted he needed a "kick up the bum" after that incident.

That was not the first time Warner had been in the news for the wrong reasons this summer. In May, he was involved in a heated Twitter exchange with Australian journalists Malcolm Conn and Robert Craddock, for which he later issued a public apology, and was subsequently fined AUD $5750 (US $5600) by Cricket Australia for his indiscretions.

The game itself ended in the draw that always looked likely. Australia A began the fourth day's play with a 28-run partnership between openers Aaron Finch and Shaun Marsh. Once Marsh departed for 11, Alex Doolan came in, with the pair putting on 105 runs for the second wicket. Doolan was later dismissed leg before by Kyle Abbott for 38. Warner came in at No. 4 and, fresh from his 193 in the first innings, struck six boundaries before being caught behind, ironically, by Tsolekile off Beuran Hendricks for 33.

Wickets fell at regular intervals for the Australians, but the efforts of Finch (88), Doolan, and Warner ensured they batted out enough time to hold on to a draw in the first unofficial Test between these sides. Both teams will have a three-day break before they resume battle in the second unofficial Test in Rustenburg on July 31.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Mark on July 30, 2013, 5:27 GMT

    Warner, being an international cricketer, should realise that a certain amount of responsibility rests with him in terms of behaviour and when he does wrong, he gets branded and further transgressions are highlighted. Having said that, on field incidents are what makes cricket, well, cricket. I think that we have learnt a lot from the SA A performance. This is why I honestly think they need to keep this team playing as much as they can.

  • Rob on July 29, 2013, 9:23 GMT

    All this supposition about how great Warner is!! I don't care how good he is! He's lucky to be walking around, if he'd been any ordinary person he'd have been arrested and cautioned for assault! So please give me a break when it comes to media microscope etc!!

    Best bit is Oz are afraid to call him back to Ashes! Just think of the sledging he'd get from Swann, Jimmy and Broad?? That would soon test his temperment and any failure then would mean an end to his career.

    So bring him on!

  • Deon on July 29, 2013, 8:42 GMT

    @ Greatest_Game - Your analysis is a bit one-sided. Warner has played 19 Tests, most of these matches against good opposition. He averages 39.46 and has a SR of 68. If you combine that with his excellent fielding he is a very valuable player. Also, to put things in perspective, did you know that Australia's top order (1-7), excluding Warner, Ponting, Clarke and Hussey, averaged a mere 27 during these matches. Also remember that this is the start of Warner's career. He is 26 years old. During the next 9 years he will be at his peak. There simply isn't anyone better in Australia at the moment (other than Clarke).

  • Kendal on July 29, 2013, 7:54 GMT

    @ Greatest have a point about the pitch being a road but "6th string attack" is surely taking the hyperbole a bit too far. This is the back up attack to the best bowling unit in the world, in Test cricket anyway (that statement is based on rankings not national pride - our ODI side is not good at the moment). Abbott and De Lange are both going to play a lot more cricket for the senior side. Abbott also destroyed Pakistan in his first Test, although I suppose one might argue that they don't have the strongest batting line-up. The point is, give Warner a little credit for his innings...

  • Dummy4 on July 29, 2013, 3:44 GMT

    Jacob Romani-Phillips: Katich has retired from First Class cricket in Australia, and is thus unavailable to be selected anyway. Yes, it seems silly since he is still playing First Class cricket in England but that's the way it works, however silly it may seem.

  • James on July 28, 2013, 23:37 GMT

    Welcome to assassination by media. The one eye witness report I have read described the incident as so insignificant that he was shocked anyone bothered to mention it. It lasted a second or two, with the SA guy quickly being moved away by a team mate - so clearly he was the one who was the aggressor.

    Nice to see though how the haters come out in force to project their rage over the beat up. That's quite an irony, don't you think?

  • Ray on July 28, 2013, 13:22 GMT

    The fact of the matter is that, rightly or wrongly, Warner is under the media icroscope. Given this, he is likely to be provoked by opponents. Surely, if he had any sense, when this happens, he'd take a few deep breathes and smile at his tormenter not face him down.

  • gary on July 28, 2013, 11:47 GMT

    The reaction to my posting was expected as national identity usually prevails. When describing Bell's contribution it was in awe of his ability in comparison to all and sundry in both teams in these matches. His efforts were herculean in comparison to the more recognised stars, more importantly his performance allowed others to play their part and contribute to wins. I am still amazed that his own countrymen (comments on Cric Info for example) have not recognized the same, therein lays the true recognition of the quality of the team. The continual scrutiny on Warner's every move, I find nausea. To find means to justify nearly daily publication of any mistomenia this player may commit is obsessive and boarders on muck racking. The idea that 31,000 hits on different blogs (relating to his name), somehow identifies guilt by association is somewhat crude.

  • alan on July 28, 2013, 10:52 GMT

    come on cricinfo - this is not good reporting - if you read reports from other multiple media outlets the facts are that Tsolekile instigated the confrontation and it was Tsolekile that had to be dragged away from Warner all because of something that Warner said 24 hrs earlier. This article should be about Tsolekile and his issues as he dwelled on something for 24hrs and then actively targeted Warner the next day and then had to be physically restrained when he went to far! Fair enough Warner has been in the news quite a bit and this makes a better headline but i dont think it is fair to produce such a onesided article that is clearly designed to further inflame Warners situation. This kind of reporting could lead to Warner not getting picked because of his "indiscretions" when given the current Australian batting form I dont think the team can afford to not pick the best available side based on actual form! Very disappointed in Cricinfo!!

  • Saransh on July 28, 2013, 10:42 GMT

    You guys can criticize him all you want. But David Warner is the man who plays the game with utmost passion for his country. Yes, he has made mistakes in the past, which I think he is learning from. David Warner is better than Ed Cowan and Philip Hughes put together, he is devastating at the top if he gets going, he allows Watson to shift opening roles with him and I think he can get a lot mature playing with Rogers at the top. Plus, the two lefty combination might prove bit more troublesome for England rather than the left-right. Runs are runs, wherever you get them, I'd like to go to the Indian fans over here, their team might be trashing Zimbabwe, but they would consider it as an AWAY series win and later argues (after the South Africa tour) that their side can play abroad. They will defend Dhawan's inclusion in the side by portraying these number THEN, so c'mon people, time to support your team come-what-may, like the Indians.