Australia may have wrapped up the ODI series against India in just two games but it’s come at a massive cost with David Warner sent for scans on his injured groin.
After hitting an entertaining 83, four overs into India’s chase of Australia’s 4/389, Warner dived across to stop a ball but stayed down after an awkward landing.
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Clutching his groin, Warner was in plenty of discomfort as the Australian medical team helped him from the field and took him to hospital for scans.
“Not good signs for David Warner there,” Adam Gilchrist said on Fox League commentary.
“This is a big moment for the summer, because a bad groin strain can take a long long time to heal. It’s not something you can quickly get over, not just for this white ball series but we’re only a few weeks from the first test.”
Brett Lee wasn’t painting a nice picture.
“Without pre-empting things, it doesn’t look good at all,” he said. “He could have even ripped it off the bone the way he’s walking.”
Nathan Lyon said he was in good hands with the Aussie physio but it’s a potentially massive blow for the Aussies.
Cricket Australia confirmed it was an adductor injury and he will have scans tonight to confirm the severity.
The injury reportedly takes around three to six weeks unless it is torn, which could take months rather than weeks.
But with the first Test match set to start in just 18 days, Warner’s fitness will be a big point of contention as it will be a race against the clock for the Adelaide Test starting on December 17.
Questions had already been asked of who would open the batting with Warner in the first Test with Victorian young gun Will Pucovski hitting twin double centuries in his side’s opening two Sheffield Shield matches.
Incumbent opener Joe Burns has been far from impressive at the same time, with 57 runs in five innings in Queensland’s three first-class fixtures.
Despite that, Burns was firming to keep his position in the team, after support from Justin Langer and Warner.
Chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns even said he would look to consult Warner on his opening partner.
In Fox Cricket commentary after Warner’s injury, Warne said: “Maybe they’ll interview Will Pucovski and say who do you want to bat with?”
The consult of Warner has been a hot topic ahead of the international series.
Ricky Ponting said he was “surprised” by the call, while fellow former Test skipper Ian Chappell slammed the idea as “ridiculous”.
“You pick a guy at the best time for him to succeed, well there’s no better time for him to succeed than when he’s coming off the back of a couple of double-hundreds,” Chappell told Nine News.
“Find out if he can cope with it at the next level. If he can’t, it’ll be very sad. If he succeeds, you’ve got him for the next 10 and maybe even 15 years as a really good player. Burns isn’t your future.”
However it appears as though Pucovski could accompany Burns if Warner’s injury is as bad as first feared.
More pressing is the opening position for the third and final ODI.
According to Test star Nathan Lyon, he said it was a “big job for George Bailey and Justin Langer but if it was me I’d be putting Matt Wade straight at the top there and leaving the middle order who have been absolutely exceptional”.
“If you just leave the middle order the same it’s been quite effective. It’s quite easy for Wade to slide in there and open up with Finch and you still get that left-right combination,” Lyon said earlier in the coverage. “Obviously Wade is quite skilful and aggressive as well.”
The other option discussed during the coverage was wicketkeeper Alex Carey.