South Africa apologises over 'distasteful' Warner stunt

Cricket South Africa has apologised to the Australian cricket team after two officials became involved in a shocking stunt aimed at taunting David Warner and his wife.

A number of fans attending the opening day of the first Test in Port Elizabeth wore masks depicting New Zealand rugby player Sonny Bill Williams' face.

The stunt was a nasty dig at Warner following his furious run-in with South African wicketkeeper Quinton de Kock.

Warner's wife Candice had a well-publicised encounter with Williams in 2007, before she met the Aussie vice-captain.

The masks were originally banned before officials reversed the decision, while CSA executives Clive Eksteen and Altaaf Kazi were later snapped smiling and linking arms with three spectators wearing the masks.

Eksteen is head of commercial and marketing and Kazi is head of communications.

The two executives were snapped with fans. Pic: 7 News

Cricket Australia and the players were reportedly angered by the entire incident, which occurred with Warner's wife and children in attendance at the St George's Park stadium.

"Cricket South Africa wishes to distance itself from the alleged action of certain officials in associating themselves with fans wearing masks representing the face of Sonny Bill Williams," a statement read.

"While CSA respects the rights of its fans to represent their own points of view, CSA does not associate itself with these actions and urges all Portea supporters from refraining from being involved in distasteful or unwelcome actions that may impact the image of the sport and its supporters.

"CSA has taken immediate precautionary steps against the CSA officials allegedly involved in this incident and will follow the organisation's normal internal processes in this regard."

CSA president Chris Nenzani regretted the turn of events.

"On behalf of CSA I extend my sincere apologies to the board of Cricket Australia, its officials, team management, players and their families," he said.

The apology is an attempt to finally put a line through one major controversy in the series.

Warner was fined approximately $13,500 and slapped with three demerit points after being charged by the ICC with bringing the game into disrepute for his clash with de Kock.

The Australian vice-captain risks a suspension if he is charged for any further incidents in the next two years.

Meanwhile, Kagiso Rabada faces a ban from the remaining two Tests of the series after being charged with making contact with Australian captain Steve Smith on day one.

FULL STORY: Rabada to contest charge after stumps on day two