Australia news May 28, 2011

Sehwag pushed Warner to improve four-day game

ESPNcricinfo staff

David Warner, the Australia batsman who has developed a reputation as a Twenty20 specialist, has said he has the patience to be successful in the longest format of the game. Warner has found a place in the Australia A squad for their four-day matches in Zimbabwe, following three good games in the Sheffield Shield for New South Wales at the end of last season. He said it was Virender Sehwag, his captain at Delhi Daredevils in the IPL, who told him he could be a better four-day player.

"He [Sehwag] told me two years ago he saw me as a better four-day player than Twenty20 player,'' Warner told the Sydney Morning Herald. ''He said, 'If you play with your freedom, and your shot selection is correct and your decision-making's good, you're always going to score runs in that form of the game if conditions favour you.'''

Before the 2010-11 season, despite having played for Australia in Twenty20s and one-day internationals, Warner had played only four first-class games and had a highest score of 48. Against Victoria, at the beginning of this year he just missed out on a hundred, scoring 99, but then got the maiden first-class century in his next match, against Western Australia. Warner said he was happy to be recognised for that with the call-up to the Australia A four-day squad.

''I'm happy to be acknowledged for the last couple of games I played in the Shield season. It's recognition for myself that they're actually looking at me as a Test player. I can last the distance, and mentally I can be patient enough to tackle that format of the game. It's good I scored runs and showed some people. Everyone is about stats and numbers, and if you don't prove it you're never going to be that. It's good I can face 80 balls for 60 or 70 and not just try and score 100 off 50 balls.''

His captain at New South Wales, Stuart Clark, said Warner could change the perception people have of him as a short-format specialist by scoring plenty of runs in four-day cricket.

"He's got a reputation of being a Twenty20 player only because he's so good at the game,'' Clark said. ''David, whatever he chooses to do, needs to find a way to break that perception, that's his biggest challenge. If he gets runs, people are unfortunately going to keep remembering him as a Twenty20 player.

''Perception is reality with David. If he does things to benefit his four-day cricket, he can change that perception very quickly. There's no doubt that he can play the game.''

One thing working in favour of Warner's aspirations to play Test cricket for Australia is the fact that national selector Greg Chappell also believes he can improve his four-day cricket. Chappell had told Warner last December that if he adapted his game to four-day cricket it would help his form in the shorter formats too.

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  • Andrew on May 30, 2011, 0:27 GMT

    @Something_Witty - I agree that Warner has sound technique, but I think Warner's biggest problem is that he THINKS he has to strike @ say 60% in 1st class cricket. Where there is nothing wrong with Warner going at better then a run a ball for a century - IF his eye is in. I think he just needs to play whats in front of him. On the other hand I think Sehwag is too aggressive as he REALLY does have great defensive technique, he could of been greater then SRT, he lacks the discipline, (saying that about a bloke with a test average in the mid 50s! LOL!). @popcorn - the guy is still VERY young & COULD develop. I would not be writing him off just yet. Look how long it took for Symonds to mature as a cricketer! @straight_drive4 - I agree, he is at least another 2 maybe 3 yrs away from Tests though! @ youngkeepersdad - LOL! I always thought Cook was good but in an Atherton sought of way, I keep waiting for Trotts dry spell, it hasn't happenned... yet!

  • Lou on May 29, 2011, 18:47 GMT

    I'm finding all this pr around players who have done stuff all in anything other than T20 (that includes Steve Smith) disturbing. It's like cricket in Aus is some sort of reality show and you don't have to do anything to get loads of publicity. It can't be good for youngsters to have this sort of undeserved attention. Australia also needs players that can LEAVE THE BALL. I can't see Warner turning out to be one of them somehow.

  • Dummy4 on May 29, 2011, 11:50 GMT

    I see a lot written about technique here, now look at phil hughes he has worst technique ever and he still makes a lot of runs. Warner is pretty solid but he shouldnt be anywhere near the test or ODI squad. Its also very suprising how the batting quality has dropped so much in the last 2 seasons in domestic cricket in AUS, mainly inb 4 day cricket, even with a lot of bad spinners around and a lot of good pacemen out injured they still don't make big runs

  • J Ranjith on May 29, 2011, 11:31 GMT

    Test_Cricket_Best_Cricket, Yes, So many IFs, that's the reason test cricket is the best cricket and an achievement in test cricket is awesome.

  • Dummy4 on May 29, 2011, 8:42 GMT

    Exactly.....Sehwag saw him as a 4-day player not a 5-day test

  • Matt on May 29, 2011, 8:06 GMT

    If Warner is to be successful he needs to learn to leave balls- the major problem in the 10/11 Ashes. Mind you, they all do! He definitely has the technique and eye to succeed in Test cricket. Alot will depend on the makeup of the rest of the team as to whether Warner gets a run in the future. People need to be talking about Chris Lynn from QLD as a future test batsmen...

  • Dummy4 on May 29, 2011, 5:45 GMT

    go for it david! quick scoring batsmen in tests are always a treat to watch.a test match is never dull with sehwag, gilchrist, lara and jayawardene around.

    i am certain warner has the technique and temperament for the longer version of the game and hope to seeing him play a big role in the quest for regaining the ashes.

  • ganesh on May 29, 2011, 4:11 GMT

    warner best T20 player in aus!!!

  • Dennis on May 29, 2011, 3:12 GMT

    This just shows up the lack of depth Australian cricket has at the moment ,10/15 years ago they had 5/6 quality openers that couldn,t even get a go . every team goes through these cycles - India will find that out in the next 2/3 years .

  • Philip on May 29, 2011, 0:51 GMT

    Warner could, in the future, fit into the national team more often but where is his place? If Watson remains at the top of the order a Warner/Watson combination would be really hard to see succeeding in the long haul. If Watson, dropped down to No 6, then there be room at the top, but where does Steve Smith go? Realistically, I think wise selectors would play only one of those three, or two at most. What Australia really needs are players in the Trott and even Cook mould (and I used to think they weren't up to it - how wrong I was).

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