Shane Warne has called the ICC's decision to fine Michael Clarke "a disgrace", claiming that Clarke was only standing up for his players after James Anderson threatened to punch George Bailey in the face.
No such comment from Anderson was aired on the television coverage via the stump microphone but Warne, who was commentating on the Gabba Test for Channel Nine and Sky Sports, tweeted on Monday night that "we all heard Anderson's sledge that led to Clarke reacting".
Clarke and Anderson were involved in a heated discussion during the final stages of Australia's victory in Brisbane on Sunday and the stump microphone picked up Clarke telling Anderson he should "get ready for a broken f***ing arm".
Clarke was subsequently fined 20% of his match fee for a breach of the ICC Code of Conduct for the comments but Warne claimed in a series of tweets on Monday that Clarke had only "stuck up for his debutant Bailey".
"On another note, I think it's a disgrace that @MClarke23 has been fined. What about what Jimmy Anderson said to Bailey, which wasn't heard," Warne initially tweeted. "@MClarke23 stuck up for his debutant Bailey as he should have too as Capt after Anderson said he wanted to punch Bailey in the face!"
@MClarke23 stuck up for his debutant Bailey as he should have too as Capt after Anderson said he wanted to punch Bailey in the face !— Shane Warne (@warne888) November 25, 2013
"Unfortunately only Clarke's reaction to Anderson's was heard live, we all heard Anderson's sledge that led to Clarke reacting! To me it should just stay out in the middle. They all shook hands had a giggle & moved on. By fining Clarke it's made a big deal out of it.
"Everyone should have just laughed, moved on & be thankful for ashes fever. Bring on Adelaide I'm sure both teams are saying. As an international sportsman, if you decide to dish it out sledging you have to be prepared to cop it back too & not complain."
Lastly as an international sportsman, if you decide to dish it out ie sledging you have to be prepared to cop it back too & not complain.— Shane Warne (@warne888) November 25, 2013
Bailey was fielding under the helmet in close during the final stages of the match and was seen exchanging words with Anderson, the England No. 11.
Bailey was asked about the incidents when he arrived in Hobart on Monday but he was unwilling to elaborate on what had led to Anderson approaching him. "I'm not sure, he must have been a bit upset by the way the game was going, I guess," Bailey said.
Clarke accepted the charge laid by on-field umpire Kumar Dharmasena and third official Marais Erasmus, meaning there was no need for a disciplinary hearing.