Australia, on Wednesday announced that their star batsman David Warner will not feature in Boxing Day Test against India in Melbourne after failing to recover in time from the groin injury he picked up during the ODI series.
The left-hander batsman sustained a groin strain while fielding in the second One Day Internationals against India. After suffering groin injury, he missed the subsequent three-match T20I series along with the opening Test match at Adelaide.
Warner also underwent a comprehensive rehabilitation program in order to fast-track his return from the injury. However, Cricket Australia (CA) confirmed that the southpaw has been ruled out for the second Test as well.
At the same time, Australia fast bowler Sean Abbott, who recovered from a calf strain and was declared fit has also ruled out of the second Test against India due to Australia’s bio-bubble protocols.
Both Warner and Abbott were recovering from their respective injuries in Sydney, outside the team’s bio-bubble in the lead up to the second Test. Australia confirmed that no replacements will be added to the squad in the absence of Warner and Abbott.
Cricket Australia also confirmed that both Warner and Abbott will rejoin the Australian squad ahead of the third Test. Both the cricketers were flown to Melbourne after the COVID-19 outbreak in Sydney.
“Warner and Abbott spent time in Sydney outside the team’s bio-secure hub to recover from injury. While neither player has been in a specific ‘hotspot’ as outlined by NSW Health, Cricket Australia’s bio-security protocols do not allow them to rejoin the squad in time for the Boxing Day Test,” a Cricket Australia statement read.
Warner’s absence in the second Test means that the hosts will enter the field with the same playing eleven that beat India by eight wickets to take 1-0 lead in the four-match series. The hosts will likely stick with the makeshift opening combo of Joe Burns and Matthew Wade – who opened for the first time during his first-class career in the Adelaide Test.
The host in the upcoming Boxing Day Test will be looking to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the 4-match series. The hosts will be fired up as they bowled out India for their lowest-ever Test total — 36-all out in Adelaide.
Australia Squad For Boxing Day Test:
Tim Paine (captain), Joe Burns, Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Moises Henriques, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade.