Australian opening batsman Michael Slater has apologised to Rahul Dravid for using abusive language against the Indian vice-captain during the first cricket Test between the two countries here on Thursday.

Australian media manager Brian Murgatroyd was quoted by Aussie journalists covering the tour as having stated that Slater and Dravid sat down together over beer after the game. In fact, Dravid had gone to the Australian dressing room at the end of the match.

Slater's tantrum began after his appeal for a catch against Dravid was turned down by the third umpire. In what Peter Roebuck described as "Slater's moment of madness", the Aussie walked up to umpire S Venkatraghavan and argued the decision with him and then turned to Dravid, who stood his ground, as he had a right to, and exchanged hot words with him

ICC match referee Cammie Smith of West Indies let him off after a warning. The Australian correspondents said their players, after seeing the replay believed the third umpire made the right decision. Australian captain Steve Waugh conceded that Slater's behaviour was wrong but he put the responsibility for that on the technology that is used to capture action on the field.

The Australian reporters also pointed out that their batsmen had stood their ground in similar circumstances this year and the verdicts had gone in their favour. Pointing out that the visitors cannot have it both ways, Roebuck said Slater may have taken the catch "but his protestations were out of place".