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Australian Cricket: Are the selectors right to give Warner another Test chance?

Australian opening batsman David Warner has been handed a Test lifeline by the selectors after being named in the squad that will begin the Ashes series.

Cricket Australia have named their 17-man squad for World Test Championship final against India at The Oval in June and also the opening two Tests of the Ashes series against England. 

Warner has been included and is set to open the batting against India. Depending on how that goes, Cricket Australia will then make a decision regards the opening Ashes Test. 

The selection of Warner comes as a surprise to many and has certainly divided opinion among pundits and supporters alike. 

Some argue that Warner should step aside after a poor run of form over a number of years, while some suggest he has earned the right to be given another chance. 

Only time will tell if the selectors are correct, but it would seem they have all bases covered as they prepare to head over to England

But are they right to give him another chance? Based on his form over a long period of time now, you would have to say no. 

Warner has scored just one century in his past 32 innings and that is well below the high standards set by an Australian Test opener. 

Especially one such as Warner, who sits seventh on the list of Australia’s all-time leading run-scorers in Test matches. 

The 36-year-old has 25 Test centuries to his name, but over the last few years the runs have dried up. Warner was ruled out of the tour of India in 2022 with a fractured elbow, while he had an Ashes series to forget in 2019, despite Australian retaining the urn. 

England quick Stuart Broad had the sign over him once again as Warner averaged 9.5 with the bat. Warner will be faced with the same challenge again and there is a huge question mark over whether he is up to it.

Has Warner earned the right to play? 

One of the players ready to step in should Warner be dropped, Marcus Harris, certainly believes so. 

It goes without saying that Warner has been one of the Australian greats and although he is out of form, many believe he deserves the chance to prove he still has it. 

Former Australia quick Mitchell Johnson does not follow that line of thinking. Johnson paid tribute to what Warner has achieved in the past. 

However he believes if players were to be judged on previous achievements, Ricky Ponting would still be batting at No.3!

The selectors have covered themselves 

Despite all the controversy regarding Warner’s selection, it does seem as though Cricket Australia have played it smart. 

Warner is included and gets his chance, but they have a back-up plan if things do not work out early and the squad is only for the first two Ashes Tests. 

If things are not working out like they hoped, then changes to the squad can be made and Warner could be replaced. 

Warner is also by no means set to start the opening Ashes Test. Much will depend on how he performs against India in the World Test Championship final. 

The selectors also have options if Warner does not earn a start in the first Test. Harris and Matt Renshaw are ready and waiting to step in if Warner gets off to a poor start in the UK.

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Selectors have got it right 

All in all, the selectors have made the right call in including Warner in the 17-man squad. As the saying goes, form is temporary, class is permanent. And although Warner has been out of form for some time, if he can find it again and get anywhere near his best, he will be a big asset in the UK. 

He has a point to prove, a strong mentality and will certainly be giving his all to turn things around. If he can’t do that then Harris and Renshaw are among the options to replace him and the selectors can switch the squad up after the second Test. 

Australia are priced at 2.30 to win the Ashes and Warner back to his best could help them to achieve it.

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