David Warner admitted it was unlikely he would be fully fit for Australia’s third Test against India, but the opener is hoping to play.
The explosive opener was named in the squad after he sat out the first two Tests with a groin injury and has been badly missed as Australia’s top order struggled to build partnerships.
In his absence, Australia promoted Matthew Wade to open the innings alongside Joe Burns but the move did not pay the desired results. Barring the second innings of the first Test where Australia were chasing 90, both Burns and Wade failed to do well with the bat. The poor show with the bat also saw Burns getting dropped from the Test squad.
Warner has been training with his teammates in Melbourne after rejoining the Australian Test squad but his participation in the third match seems “highly doubtful”.
“We’ve got a training session today and tomorrow so I can’t give you any more indication of where I’m at. I haven’t ran the last couple of days but after today and tomorrow it will probably give me a better indication of where I am,” he said in a news conference.
“Am I going to be 100 per cent? Highly doubtful. But I’ll be doing everything I can to get on that park and play and even if that means I’m not 100 per cent, I’ll be doing everything I can to let the selectors give me that green light.”
Australia’s performance on the field has been poor too. During the Boxing Day Test, they dropped more than half-a-dozen catches and eventually it cost them the game. A half-fit Warner might be another reason to worry for the hosts. As far as Warner is concerned, he said it will be his ability to field which will determine his participation in the third Test, rather than his ability to run between the wickets.
“I know I can manage the running between the wickets, the shot making I have,” he said.
“Whether it’s standing in the slips cordon, taking catches to my right and left … I need to be agile enough to make sure I’m taking those chances. Not be a hindrance there,” he added.
Despite an outbreak of Covid-19 in Sydney, Cricket Australia has confirmed the third Test will be held at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on January 7, with players expected to arrive on Monday.