If ever a team needed an injection of batting excellence it is Australia right now. Two down in the Ashes already and seemingly out of it, the Baggy Green are struggling to make the runs in England and ahead of the third Test at Old Trafford next week look set to lose by a heavy margin.
What Michael Clarke needs is a strong top-order batsman who can get out there and dig in, which is why David Warner may well earn a place in the side following an impressive 193 for his country’s A side this week.
Warner, who was dropped following disciplinary problems in the lead-up to the Ashes, has endured his two-match punishment in exile and is now ready to get back into the Test whites. Australia certainly need him. Fans who bet on the Ashes know the tourists’ top order is too fragile.
Shane Watson and Chris Rogers failed to make an impression at Lord’s, while the pair had a poor outing in the Trent Bridge first innings. Granted, a second-innings 84 partnership showed sign of improvement yet they lack Warner’s experience to bat through rough patches.
If Australia are to threaten England at Old Trafford they need Warner back in the side and scoring runs. The left-hander is a competent batsman and boasts a greater average than both Watson and Rogers. In fact, his 39.46 batting average is very good for a player with 19 Tests under his belt and the opener’s 193 this week is evidence of how well he can play.
The problem Australia selectors have is who Warner would replace. Cricket Test betting fans have seen Rogers struggle so far but he kept his place above Ed Cowan, who was dropped for Usman Khawaja at Lord’s. Would Rogers move down to third in place or Khawaja or lose his place altogether? On the basis of Khawaja’s half-century at Lord’s one would assume the latter, meaning Warner has his chance to prove himself in the top order.