Australia limited-overs captain Aaron Finch has informed that he and David Warner will open the batting together at the T20 World Cup despite Warner twice being dropped by Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL this year.
Warner hasn’t played a T20I for Australia since September 2020, that is a whole one year, missing Australia’s last 14 matches across four series due to a many different reasons like injury, rest, and schedule clashes.
He has faced a difficult IPL season across the two halves of the tournament. Warner has scored two half-centuries in eight innings but his strike-rate of 107.73 was cause for him to be dropped as captain by Sunrisers during the first half of the IPL season in India. He didn’t tour with Australia to the Caribbean and Bangladesh mid-year in order to rest for the second half of the IPL and the World Cup but scored just 0 and 2 in his first two games of resumption of the IPL in the UAE and was dropped out of Sunrisers’ side again.
But Finch, speaking a day before departing to the UAE for the World Cup, backed Warner to be his opening partner for the tournament.
“Yep, absolutely,” Finch said. “He’s one of the best players to ever play the game for Australia. I’ve got no doubt that his preparation, while he would love to be playing for Hyderabad no doubt, I know that he’s still training away. He’ll be good to go.”
Finch enters the tournament under an injury cloud
Finch missed Australia’s tour of Bangladesh due to knee surgery. There was initially doubt as to whether he would be available for Australia’s two warm-up games against New Zealand and India but he is confident he will be ready to play in both of them.
“Over the last couple of weeks my recovery has progressed really well so it’s looking more and more likely that I’ll be fit and ready to go for them,” Finch said. “And just in terms of the intensity that I’ve been able to train, the amount of accelerations, decelerations, putting load through my knee, that’s all really positive. So, yeah, I’ve got no issues.
“I had probably my biggest session in terms of fielding, changing direction, and all that stuff with batting involved as well so that’s gone as well as it could. I had a meeting with the surgeon yesterday and he was really happy with where it’s at.”
Finch believes all his teammates are at their best
Despite the various issues faced by the cricketers due to strict quarantine and bio-bubble, Finch backed his team saying,” Training indoors or training just in the nets is no comparison obviously to game intensity so the two warm-up games and the lead-in to the World Cup is going to be really crucial,” Finch said.
“We get out of quarantine, I think there’s three days of practice scheduled, and then two warm-up games, so they’re going to be really important to get guys up to speed as quick as possible.
“But I’ve got a lot of confidence in the experience of the group. We’ve got guys who have come off long layoffs before. We’ve got guys who have come off injuries before.
It’s not really all that much different when you’re trying to get yourself up to speed quickly. I think that that will play into their hands and might allow us to be a little bit fresher, to be honest.”