During the fifth day of the second Test of England’s tour of South Africa that happened in Cape Town, England's wicket-keeper batsman Jos Buttler and all-rounder Ben Stokes were involved in a dirty war of words with South Africa pacer Vernon Philander.
The incident happened after the third delivery of the 127th over when Philander, who retired yesterday played a delivery from England's spinner Dom Bess towards their captain Joe Root at mid-off.
Philander stood at his crease not wanting to take a single as Root threw the ball back to Butler. Buttler expected Philander to get out of the way of the throw, that he couldn’t resist from saying some bad words to the proteas veteran. Buttler shouted, “F***ing move. F***ing knobhead”. While that was captured on the stump mic, the broadcaster quickly turned it off. He didn't seem to have any sort of respect to the proteas veteran who was playing his last match. Ben Stokes also joined Jos from the slips.
The episode did not heat up as Philander chose to remain silent. He continued to ensure that he plays the remaining overs on Day 5 to save the Test for his team, but even his calm and composed stay at the crease wasn't sufficient for the hosts to save the test.
Cricket fraternity and fans had a mixed response to the event. Some believed that it was highly unprofessional from Buttler, others took it as part and parcel of the game.
South African bowler Dale Steyn too expressed his view on Twitter.
Finally what followed was a great test match, which showed the world why a 5-day test match brings in more entertainment than the newly proposed 4-day test match.