Australia news February 14, 2012

Steve Waugh questions handling of Warner, Haddin

Steve Waugh, the former Australia captain and a member of the Argus review panel, has questioned the selection circumstances around Ricky Ponting's appointment as stand-in for Michael Clarke in Friday's triangular series ODI at the SCG.

Pointing to David Warner's place as the ODI vice-captain, Waugh wondered why the opening batsman had not been elevated to the captaincy for the one match, while Clarke recovers from a hamstring strain.

"Ricky will do it blindfolded, but the future is probably Dave Warner so I'm surprised they didn't go to Warner and go to the future," Waugh said in Sydney on Tuesday. "It's only a temporary thing, you put Dave Warner in there as vice-captain … I assume they think he is leadership material. If he's vice-captain why can't he captain the side as well? Maybe they think Dave's not quite ready but why is he vice-captain? It doesn't make sense to me."

Waugh also queried the status of Brad Haddin, who was ostensibly rested for the start of the series but remains out of the side while Matthew Wade gets comfortable as the team's limited overs gloveman. Part of the Argus review's directives were to enhance communication and clarity between the selectors and the players, and Waugh appeared doubtful if that could currently be the case.

"I was surprised when they said [Haddin] was rested. He basically said he was dropped," Waugh said. "There's mixed messages there. If he's rested, why doesn't he come back in and be the captain? He's the vice-captain of the Test side, so there was the opportunity for maybe Brad to captain the one-day team. But obviously, he's having an enforced rest. I'm not sure what it is but it's a bit confusing and it would be good for someone to clear it up."

For his part, Haddin seems resigned to the fact that he is now the first-choice wicketkeeper for Test matches only, and has geared his training patterns to playing out the Sheffield Shield season for New South Wales before heading to the Caribbean as the gloveman for three Tests.

"I'm still out of the one day team and I can see no reason for that to change," Haddin told Sky Sports Radio. "I'm pretty comfortable where it's at, all my training over the last week or so has been to make sure I'm ready for the four-day cricket and the Test matches in the West Indies. I can't be sitting around waiting for my phone to ring to play one day cricket again, my job now is to make sure I'm up and running and where I need to be for the Test series."

Haddin was also supportive of Wade's continued retention as the ODI 'keeper, a position the Victorian has filled with some aplomb, particularly with his punchy batting at the top of the order.

"The bits I've seen he's made a pretty good transition into the one-day team, he's playing with a bit of energy and from what I've seen, I see no reason why you should move him," Haddin said, before reiterating his confidence that he remained the Test wicketkeeper of choice. "I can see no reason why that [staying Test 'keeper] should change. We had a successful Test summer, apart from our little hiccup against New Zealand in Hobart, so I can see no reason why that should change."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here