'Very hard for Warner to keep vice-captaincy'

Former Test bowler Stuart Clark says David Warner is in serious danger of losing his job as Australia's vice-captain.

Warner avoided a ban over his infamous staircase stoush with Quinton de Kock but his level-two charge came with a heavy fine and three demerit points.

It means Warner will essentially be on his final warning for the next two years, with even a minor misdeed to trigger an automatic suspension.

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“I imagine it will be very hard for him to keep his job as vice-captain if he gets suspended,” Clark told Fox Sports News on Friday.

“Because it means he’s bringing the game into disrepute and he’s also bringing Cricket Australia into disrepute.

Will Warner lose the VC? Image: Getty

“He’s also lowering the standard of the cricket team and the standard the Australian cricket board set for the Australian cricket team.

"For David’s sake I hope he can keep his cool and they don’t have to have that discussion.”

Knowing full-well that Warner is on his final warning, Proteas captain Faf du Plessis won't rule out the idea of antagonising Warner to try to get another rage-fuelled reaction in the second Test.

Du Plessis suggested it could be a clever tactic, given the prospect of Warner missing the third and/or fourth Tests.

"I didn't think of it before the series, but I did hear that yesterday. It's probably a little bit smart, being like that," du Plessis said in Port Elizabeth.

"If you can entice someone to make a mistake, to get them missing the rest of the series - that's probably a tactical move.

"Before we came into this series and I looked at all the demerit points - all of it was on the South African's team side. There wasn't much on the Australian team.

"Now that it's happened, it's possibly an angle we can look to get to."

Steve Smith backed Warner to handle any additional pressure created by the hosts.

"Davey plays really well when he's aggressive and gets into a contest. Obviously, he's going to have to be careful not to cross the line," Smith said.

"He's not got any more chances. He's aware of that."

with AAP