David Warner, the seasoned Australian opener, has found himself under scrutiny due to his lackluster performances in the ongoing Ashes 2023 series against England. The 36-year-old’s form has been a cause for concern since 2022, and his selection for the Ashes was a topic of extensive debate. However, the left-handed batter has failed to live up to expectations thus far.
In the ongoing Ashes series, Warner has struggled to improve his recent as well as overall Test record in England. With just one fifty to his name, the Paddington-born cricketer has managed a meager average of 23.50, posting scores of 9, 36, 66, 25, 4, and 1 from six innings. Adding to his woes, Stuart Broad dismissed the Aussie opener in both innings of the third Test, making it the 17th time Broad has gotten him out throughout their encounters.
After Australia’s defeat in Leeds, former skipper Michael Clarke opined that the Aussies have enough options to replace the misfiring Warner. Speaking to the Sky Sports Radio, Clarke said that Australia should consider replacing Warner in the playing eleven. He even suggested a host of names as southpaw’s replacement as the opener. While the likes of Marcus Harris and Matt Renshaw are in the squad, the Liverpool-born cricketer suggested that Australia should promote a middle-order batter as an opener.
“Tell me what they do now … The No.1 issue is you’ve stuck with Warner, given him every opportunity, and (Stuart) Broad’s still got his number. Is it time?. If it’s time, I wouldn’t even be thinking about who opens the batting because you’ve got options,” Clarke said.
“I reckon Mitch Marsh is in form. If he had to do it, he could do it. Alex Carey probably won’t because he’s got to keep, but Travis Head could do it. Marnus Labuschagne isn’t making as many runs as he should at No.3. He could open, Smithy could go to No.3 and Head to No.4 (with Marsh and Green No.5 and No.6),” the cricketer-turned-commentator added.
The 42-year-old further stated that Warner’s fate also depends on Cameron Green‘s fitness ahead of the fourth Test.
“The thing you’ve got to think about first is is David Warner’s time up? And the other thing, if you’re going to bring Cameron Green back in, is he 100 percent fit to bowl the overs he needs to bowl? I think they should either stick with Warner or play with the batting order and keep Mitch Marsh,” Clarke concluded.
Notably, the fourth Ashes Test is scheduled to begin on July 19 at the Old Trafford Cricket Ground in Manchester.