Having denied Australia a victory at the Gabba, India travelled to Adelaide with confidence for the second Test match of the Border-Gavaskar series.
David Warner has no intention of clearing the air with Quinton de Kock after their stairwell stoush during Australia’s last visit to South Africa, but both men have played down the likelihood of tensions reigniting between the two nations.
Warner and de Kock delivered one of the ugliest moments of a bitter Test series in 2018 when they squared off on a staircase after play in Durban.
The confrontation was sparked by de Kock making a derogatory comment about Warner’s wife Candice and her tryst with Sonny Bill Williams more than a decade earlier.
Warner described the sledge as “vile and disgusting”, and the debacle was made worse in Port Elizabeth when a number of fans – and two Cricket South Africa officials – were photographed wearing Williams face masks.
Warner said he hadn’t spoken to de Kock since the heated 2018 series.
“Obviously we’ll cross paths playing against each other. But I don’t have his number and I speak to a few of the South African guys but I’ve never played in the same team as him or anything like that,” Warner told reporters in Johannesburg.
“Obviously it’s a little bit different. I’m sure if I see him on the field and that, we’ll just treat each other how we normally would as respectful opponents.”
A hostile capacity crowd is forecast for the T20 series-opener at the Wanderers on Friday night (Saturday morning AEDT), Warner and Steve Smith’s first match in South Africa since the Cape Town ball-tampering saga that earned them 12-month suspensions.
Warner isn’t expecting a repeat of the hostilities during the tour, which also includes a return to Newlands for the final T20 followed by three ODIs.
“It’s one-day cricket and Twenty20 cricket. You don’t really have much time over the short period of time to get underneath each other’s skin or anything like that,” he said.
“And you don’t go out there to do that. Obviously they had some heated exchanges with the English (last month) and that was during the Test matches.
“For us, our focus is moving forward and trying to get the wins on the board and send a message to everyone that the (T20) World Cup is in our backyard and we want to be a team to be beaten.”
Wicketkeeper-batsman de Kock – now South Africa’s captain after replacing longtime incumbent Faf du Plessis across all formats – said he expected the series to be played in the right spirit.
“I think me and (Warner) have moved on from there anyway,” he said.
“We just look to play cricket, we still both love to play the game really hard. But I don’t think anything will happen.
“We’ll just carry on with the way we need to go about things and won’t worry too much about it.”