Media observing David Warner after Australia's Twenty20 tri-series final victory over New Zealand a fortnight ago would attest to the fervour with which he was about to embrace the South African tour.

"Thinking about it here [in a concrete bunker below the south stand at Eden Park] sends shivers down my spine," Warner said in his capacity as Australia's T20 captain.

"I want to get over there - enjoy tonight - and get into it. I love it.

"I've got to make sure I'm in the right mental state and play each ball on its merit."


If he was anything other than sincere, Warner should have been at Hollywood's Dolby Theatre accepting an Oscar yesterday.

Yet there was trouble at t'mill during the tea break on the fourth day of the first test against South Africa at Durban, allegedly from a comment made by rival Quinton de Kock about Warner's wife Candice.

They apparently shook hands after Australia won the test by 118 runs.

Warner referred to de Kock in a matey fashion as "Quinny" during the Eden Park engagement.

These ears have heard some of the vitriol Warner has been subjected to, including barbs about his wife, when he has fielded on boundaries such as Eden Park.

Best not to have your children in the vicinity.

Still, like it or not, that's what cricketers - and sportspeople in general - must endure to earn a living.

The problem lies with Warner having unleashed his share of verbal abuse on opponents through the years.

No one can erase their past, particularly in a digital age. Call it karma, but Warner will cop this until he retires, and possibly beyond.

However, Warner has matured from that figure who sledged the cricket community at length, including the fracas with now-England test captain Joe Root at Birmingham's Walkabout bar in 2013.

Warner marked that as the turning point in his career. He is now married with two daughters.

His wife was formerly Candice Falzon, the former professional ironwoman and lifesaver.

As a result of his rebirth, Warner has become known as "The Reverend" in the Australian camp and only has the odd alcoholic drink these days.

Ahead of The Ashes in November he told Britain's Telegraph "having two young kids with a hangover is hard".

Somehow he needs to filter out any malicious references to his wife, kids or other points of vulnerability that incite anger.

The temptation must be huge though, given what we have seen at Kingsmead, to unload a verbal volley.

That is Warner's natural instinct.

His actions towards de Kock show everyone is capable of a relapse. Who isn't, regardless of vice?

The onus goes on former New Zealand captain and match referee Jeff Crowe to dish an appropriate punishment.