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regular-article-logo Sunday, 03 March 2024

Mitchell Johnson questions David Warner’s plan for Test retirement in Sydney

Former Australia quick has tore into Warner and selector George Bailey, questioning the inclination to grant the opener’s ‘farewell’ desire

Our Bureau Calcutta Published 04.12.23, 08:26 AM
Mitchell Johnson.

Mitchell Johnson. File picture

David Warner’s plan for Test retirement in Sydney is facing fierce criticism from one of his former teammates, Mitchell Johnson.

The former Australia quick has tore into Warner and selector George Bailey, questioning the inclination to grant the opener’s ‘farewell’ desire.

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The Australia selectors, led by chairman Bailey, have included Warner
in the squad for the first Test against Pakistan. That means the left-hander is on course for his planned farewell at Sydney, which will host the third Test.

In his for The West Australian, Johnson questioned selectors why Warner’s desire was being accommodated despite his poor form in red-ball cricket. In the last two years, Warner has scored at an average of 26.74 in Tests.

“It’s been five years and David Warner has still never really owned the ball-tampering scandal. Now the way he is going out is underpinned by more of the same arrogance and disrespect to our country.

“As we prepare for David Warner’s farewell series, can somebody please tell me why? Why a struggling Test opener gets to nominate his own retirement date? And why a player at the centre of one of the biggest scandals in Australian cricket history warrants a hero’s send-off?

“Warner certainly isn’t Australia’s Test captain and never deserved to be for that matter. In fact, he ends his career under a lifetime leadership ban.

“Yes, he has a decent overall record and some say is one of our greatest opening bats. But his past three years in Test cricket have been ordinary...

“Does this really warrant a swansong, a last hurrah against Pakistan that was forecast a year in advance as if he was bigger than the game and the Australian cricket team?” Johnson questioned.

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