The Investec Ashes 2013 August 14, 2013

The defeat was 'gutting' - Warner


David Warner has described Australia's defeat at Chester-le-Street as "gutting" given their strong position at tea on the fourth day and said the batsmen needed to look to Chris Rogers for an example of how to work in challenging conditions. Warner and Rogers put on 109 for the opening partnership in Australia's chase of 299 but once that stand was broken, the wickets all tumbled for 115 runs.

Warner played a mature innings of 71, mixing patience with considered stroke-making, but when he was caught behind off Tim Bresnan to leave the score at 168 for 3, the Australians collapsed. Warner said the feeling in the dressing room was one of disbelief as Stuart Broad ran through the batting line-up and a target that had looked gettable suddenly began to appear out of reach for the Australians.

"It was gutting," Warner said. "I went to have a shower. It took me half an hour to get over my dismissal. When I came out we had lost three quick wickets. I still can't believe it happened so fast and it finished [on Monday]. I just thought if we hung in there and got through that tough period of Broad's spell we could have come back and finished it off by lunchtime [Tuesday], but we lost. It's our fault, the batters.

"We were just talking about it just before, what goes through our minds when we walk out there and how rowdy the crowd was. It does help having the home [crowd] behind you and you know you've just got to try to get through that tough spell. As an opener I feel the hardest part for me is getting myself in and then I can relax with the crowd environment.

"But I know the feeling when the guys come in. When I first came back and I got booed walking out at Manchester I felt real nervy. I felt real small. I felt that everything was against me. And I can just imagine how some of the guys felt yesterday coming in when we lost those quick wickets. But at the end of the day we did get knocked over and it was quite disappointing."

The coach Darren Lehmann spoke after the match of his disappointment at the fact that too many of the batsmen had failed to play straight in conditions that demanded such discipline. Warner said the Australian batsmen who take a more aggressive approach could take note of the way Rogers played during his first-innings hundred, when he left outside off and made the bowlers come to him, and waited for the bad balls to score from.

"Especially for the guys who like to play their shots and like to feel bat on ball, we need to know how to rein it in and then we know we're going to get those bad balls," Warner said. "Perfect example is looking at Ian Bell, anything we've bowled to him straight at the stumps he's defended back to the bowler and probably 80% of the runs he's scored in this series have been through cover and point.

"He's waiting and being patient. It's exactly what Bucky [Rogers] was doing in the first innings, he waited for that ball and he knows his game so well that anything in that zone he's blocking and any width he's playing. That's how simple they've kept it."

In the second innings, Warner and Rogers provided Australia with their first century opening stand in an Ashes Test since Matthew Hayden and Justin Langer put on 185 at The Oval in 2005 and it was an encouraging sign for the latest of several opening combinations Australia have used in the past couple of years. Warner said opening with Rogers was similar to working with Ed Cowan.

"I said it to Bucky at the drinks break, I said I enjoy batting with you because you don't say anything. When you're out there he's got such a structured game plan and he knows his game so well, he's scored 20,000 first class runs, he's just peeled off a hundred in the first innings. He's just so basic how he goes about his game. And when we're out there and we're chasing, he just kept on saying to me, keep it simple, keep it simple and back your game plan.

"He's very similar to Ed. They're both smart people, they both go about their business how they do and I find opening with both of them has probably helped my game as well because I do like to get involved in a bit of a conversation when we're out there about things that are not anything to do with cricket, just to get your mind off it. But those guys are so disciplined with what they do and it keeps my mind at ease as well."

Warner enjoyed being back at the top of the order in Chester-le-Street instead of playing at No.6, where he felt more vulnerable to Graeme Swann early in his innings. He said it was much easier handling Swann after settling down against the new ball.

"When you're opening the batting it does take you probably 10 balls to get your feet moving properly," he said. "They're not going to move straight away. And then when you're coming in at No.6 and you're facing Swann as a left-hander it is hard to get your feet moving and you're probably more inclined to sit on the crease.

"And that's generally what he wants you to do because he's trying to get you out lbw, from a left-hander's point of view. I find it actually easier to play him if I'm opening because I can settle in, I've got my rhythm and I can use my feet. Coming in at No.6 was a bit different to face him, I was caught on the crease and it turned out he got me out like that."

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Android on August 15, 2013, 20:45 GMT

    Good attitude by Warner but Aussies shouldn't really complain about rowdy crowds, after all has he forgotten the booing and no-ball heckling of Murali by Aussie fans. maybe he was too young then.

  • James on August 15, 2013, 9:44 GMT

    @hycIass, are you having mental battles? Some days you hate the young players, the net your are saying they shouldbe persevered with, make up your mind. I for one think a couple of people from this touring party should probably get the axe.

  • Don on August 15, 2013, 9:22 GMT

    Love Warner's attitude: stung by his dismissal, and by the Australian defeat.

    As he tightens his game, he should become a formidable Test opener. Crucially, Warner is technically sound, with a nice tight defence.

    Warner also is a brilliant field and seems to add a positive energy to the team.

    As to the rest of the batting lineup...other than Clarke and Rogers: Hughes is a proven failure at Test level (poorer numbers than Marcus North, from more Tests, Khawaja really needs to starting getting good runs very soon, Watson has run out of chances and Smith probably deserves more opportunities, although he looks pretty crude at times.

  • disco on August 15, 2013, 8:02 GMT

    It's about time that Watson was cut loose to pursue his IPL career, he's just taking up space. Hughes should be playing instead of him, he's young and his 83 was a fine knock under extreme pressure. He did not deserve to be dropped. We need to give Khawaja, Hughes, and Smith extended runs. It will be hugely disappointing if Watson is playing in the home Ashes later this year.

  • Arshad on August 15, 2013, 7:23 GMT

    Australia: get in George Bailey and Adam Voges in both One-day and Test set up and see the results for yourself

  • Shankar on August 15, 2013, 7:02 GMT

    No Dussey (poor FC seasons), No dropping young players. Stick with a group. Also Marsh is having a poor time with the bat and Bailey had a very average season in Shield. Cosgrove is an issue with work ethic from what I heard but I could be wrong. Burns is had an okay Shield season but Smith, Hughes and Khawaja had better seasons.

    Eddie and Warner were a solid opening stand. Hughesy, Khawaja and Smith have talent. The work ethic of Warner, Hughesy and Smith is incredible. Technique is important but not as important as people make it out to be. Graeme Smith, Chanders and others had weird techniques but they made it work. I think Smith and Hughes can do it. The young players (Minus Warner) are playing with an axe over their heads. How can you perform like that if you are going to be dropped all the time. We had something going with Cowan and Warner and with Hughesy at 3 but after Mickey left it was changed.

    Show some faith to the Aussie players, they are good.

  • Shravan on August 15, 2013, 5:46 GMT

    Pls get rid of Watson-the most overrated cricketer of all time. Get in Ed Cowan. I'd rather play Guys with resolve and mettle. Give the young Smith and Khawaja a decent run. Hughes despite all his technical glitches deserves a decent run at the top of the order.

    Oval XI would be

    1. Rogers 2. Warner 3. Cowan/Hughes 4. Khawaja 5. Clarke 6. Smith 7. Haddin 8. Siddle 9. Lyon 10. Bird 11. Starc

    I'm still surprised why the Aussie Selectors keep ignoring Mark Cosgrove. He is a decent batsmen. Should be in the mix.

  • Dummy4 on August 15, 2013, 5:24 GMT

    No Khawaja, No Hughes, No Smith, No Watson. Seriously get G.Bailey, S.E.Marsh and D Hussey into the squad and starting line up. Warner, Rogers, S.Marsh, M.Clarke, D.Hussey, G.Bailey, B.Haddin, M, Johnson, P.Siddle, R.Harris, N.Lyon.

  • Merv on August 15, 2013, 5:20 GMT

    I agree Jeff Mills except add Adam Voges. He knows his game and has patience. He is not seduced by T20. Experienced performer. I also agree about Johnson. He is our fastest and strongest. Now also accurate. He should be in the UK now. Smith has had two years of chances and has neither the ability or intelligence at this level. His dream run has to end as should Hughes. Both he and Smith came through an era when coaches left poor technique alone. They should be ignored and some 18-19 year olds groomed for the future. Kawaja has the technique and needs more time.

  • Ross on August 15, 2013, 5:07 GMT

    @hyclass well said champ, i also like the look of Warner, Smith and Khawaja, and only if we show confidence to these guys will we get the ashes back, Smith looks like a fantastic middle order bat and Khawaja is one of our best options in the top order and i hope they fire in the oval test