England's passage to the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy was tainted by some bad blood between captain Andrew Strauss and opposite number Graeme Smith.
A little over 48 hours after reprieving Sri Lanka batsman Angelo Mathews, following a collision in a run out, Strauss denied centurion Smith a runner late in the day-nighter at Centurion. Following the 22-run which sealed passage from Group B, Strauss insisted he did not believe in runners being granted due to poor fitness.
"I didn't feel he merited having a runner at that stage," said Strauss. My personal view is you shouldn't get a runner for cramps full stop."
South Africa required 69 runs from the final six overs with five wickets in hand when Smith's request - with AB de Villiers padded up and waiting at the boundary edge - was turned down by Strauss and umpires Steve Davis and Tony Hill.
"He asked me for a runner because he was cramping, the umpires were not particularly keen to give him one, and I felt at the end of a long game when you have had a long innings you are going to be tired," added Strauss. "That is one of the things that happens and cramping to a certain extent is a preparation thing and to a certain extent a conditioning thing."
However, Smith, who crashed 141 before holing out in the 47th over, was left angered by Strauss' decision, just a month shy of England's tour here.
"From my perspective it seemed a little bit inconsistent," said Smith. "Players have got runners for cramp in the past and there needs to be a level of consistency there. The thing I have learned from this game is that the world is round and it is going to come back somewhere in his captaincy.
"It will be interesting to see how he handles it if it happens again. It was a crucial part of the game, I had been on the field for 95 overs and had cramped up."
Despite being thrashed 6-1 in the NatWest Series, England have now won their past three matches inside a week. And the misfiring batsmen have been liberated by the change of scene. Man-of-the-match Owais Shah, who hit 98, and Eoin Morgan hit 11 of the England record 12 sixes in an impressive 323 for eight.
Their sixth-biggest score in 50-over cricket set up the last-four place, something Strauss could not have dreamed of upon arrival, adding: "That batting performance was the best I can ever remember from England."