Australian batter David Warner stated that he will not be involved in a war of words with his English counterparts ahead of the Ashes. The veteran opening batter is renowned for his ability to stir up controversies with his words and recently made comments on Stuart Broad's claims of the 2021-22 Ashes being "null and void" due to COVID-19 restrictions.
Warner has a long history with England, which is particularly highlighted by his performance in the 2019 Ashes. After finishing his one-year ban due to his involvement in the ball-tampering scandal, Warner was not met with a kind reception in England. He endured a forgettable series after scoring only 95 runs in 10 innings, where he was dismissed by Broad on a recurring basis.
Warner expects the Ashes to be contested in good spirits much like modern cricket is these days.
"It just sells papers and clickbait, so I won’t be getting involved in any of that stuff. I will leave it to themselves. Today there is no real banter in the field. It is just about playing quality cricket and trying to get the upper edge on each other. It is a lot more connected these days than before which I think is great for the game," he said.
Warner was selected in the Test squad ahead of the in-form Cameron Bancroft. The veteran opening batter has not been among the runs in red-ball cricket, barring a sublime double hundred in his 100th Test against South Africa in Sydney to kickstart the year.
"This is probably the best I have seen him look in the nets for a while" - Usman Khawaja on David Warner
David Warner was ruled out of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy after the second Test due to injury. He returned to partake in the ODI series as well as the subsequent Indian Premier League (IPL) season, where he led the Delhi Capitals (DC) to the ninth spot in the points table.
Fellow opening batter Usman Khawaja believes that the veteran could be turning a corner in terms of form.
"I have seen him bat in the last couple of days and, I don’t want to jinx him, but he is looking good. This is probably the best I have seen him look in the nets for a while. That doesn’t always correlate to runs, but if we are any chance of Davey scoring runs this could be it. He always plays his best when his back is against the wall too. You never write off a great player, so I am expecting runs," Khawaja said.
Australia will begin their red-ball season with the World Test Championship (WTC) final against India from June 7 onwards at The Oval.
The Ashes, on the other hand, is scheduled to begin on June 16 with the first Test at Edgbaston, Birmingham.