Cricket

Will David Warner's return aid Australia's Ashes cause?

Warner is set to rejoin Australia (©GettyImages)
Warner is set to rejoin Australia (©GettyImages).

 

David Warner is in contention to return to the Australia squad for the Third Ashes test at Old Trafford on Thursday after flying in from Australia A's tour of Africa. 

Warner enjoyed a mixed tour, smashing 193 on the first day of Australia A's match against South Africa A in Pretoria after a disappointing outing against a Zimbabwe Select team in which he recorded scores of just 6 and 12.

The fiery opener's controversial summer continued while he was away, however, as he was involved in a heated onfield incident with South Africa A wicketkeeper Thami Tsolekile, which required the umpires to intervene. Warner later played down the incident on Twitter, saying: "Great to be back playing cricket, had lots of fun this week and a bit of friendly banter from the wicket keeper. Was very funny!!"

Twitter trouble has followed Warner throughout the summer. In May, he was involved in a heated argument with repsected Australian journalists Robert Craddock and Malcolm Conn, for which he was fined.

As recently as last week Warner's brother, Steve, caused another Twitter controversy by openly criticising his brother's team mate Shane Watson on the social media site and describing former coach Mickey Arthur as an 'a scape goat'.

The low-point of Warner's summer came when he threw a punch at England's Joe Root in a Birmingham bar after the Champions Trophy tie between the two sides in June. Warner was fined and suspended until the First Ashes Test for the incident and was subsequently sent to join the Australia A party in order to gain some time in the middle.

A disastrous batting performance at Lords in the second test, where Australia lost by 347 runs, makes it likely that Warner will be drafted straight back into the side.

He is likely to replace Phil Hughes, who has scored just 2 runs in his last 3 innings at Trent Bridge and Lords. In the drawn tour match at Hove, he put together a solid first innings of 84 but that may not be enough to save his place in the side as Steve Smith scored 102 not out.

Stand-in skipper Ed Cowan scored two half centuries at Hove and is pushing for an unlikely recall after being dropped in favour of Usman Khawaja for the Lords Test.

Coach Darren Lehmann said Cowan had done his chances no harm at all: "He batted really well both innings. We'd love him to get a big hundred and really put pressure on, but it does his chances good."

Australia are looking to fight back after going 2-0 down in emphatic style at Lords. The last time England led an Ashes series 2-0 was 1986-87 and they have never completed a whitewash against the old enemy.

 

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Topics:
Australia cricket
David Warner
Cricket
The Ashes

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