Former England captain Michael Atherton says players must not react to abuse from spectators after Ben Stokes was involved in an altercation in Johannesburg.
The incident happened after Stokes suffered a rare failure with the bat as he was dismissed for just two runs after edging one to the slips off fast bowler Anrich Nortje on Day 1.
As Stokes had no current demerit points, the episode amounts to little more than a slap on the wrist.
England were on Friday night anxiously waiting to hear whether Ben Stokes was facing disciplinary action that could include a suspension after being caught up in a foul-mouthed exchange with an abusive spectator here. I shouldn't have reacted that way.
"When I left the play area, I was repeatedly insulted by the viewers".
" I confess that my response was less than professional, and also I seriously apologise for the language I made use of, specifically to the numerous young followers enjoying the real-time newscast worldwide".
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Ben Stokes has been fined 15 per cent of his match fee and handed one demerit point for his angry outburst at a fan during England's fourth Test against South Africa. An incident will not ruin such a competitive series that we want to win.
England director of cricket Ashley Giles has called for security staff to be "more proactive" following the incident involving Ben Stokes (Nick Potts/PA Images). We have requested the site to ensure that security and administration are improved during the rest of the game so that the players and the staff members can fulfill their duties without provocation. "It's a fruity area (next to the tunnel in the Wanderers)".
"I don't condone any abuse - either supporters to players or players back (to supporters)", Atherton claimed.
The former England captain, Nasser Hussain, agreed and added: "You can be very calm and calm in a comment box, but when you just left and someone is abusing you from the bench, sometimes you lose the plot". "Everyone wants a piece of Ben Stokes, fans go up to him in hotels and airports, everyone wants a piece".
"Then you see the opposite of it, the negative side, when he's strolling off, a South African follower will certainly take a crack at at him and also it belongs to the video game". "You've reached hold your tongue".
Later, when the television cameras returned to Stokes while they were sitting on England's balcony, he raised his thumb and smiled. "It's an adult game and you hear bad words from time to time".
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