Australian coach Justin Langer has claimed that he's not holding his breath that explosive opener Warner will be ready for the first Test after injuring his groin. Amidst the Joe Burns-vs-Will Pucovski selection debate, there might well be a case of both playing if Warner fails to recover on time.
One of the biggest setbacks for Australia despite winning the second ODI and the series on Sunday was the groin injury to David Warner while fielding as it ruled him out of the remainder of the white-ball series that has one ODI and three T20Is left against India. However, the bigger headache will be his availability for the first Test starting December 17 in Adelaide Oval as Australia look to avenge their 2018/19 Border Gavaskar trophy loss against India. Warner, who has 18 of his 24 Test hundreds and an average of 65.94 at home, will be missed dearly if he fails to recover on time.
Australian head coach Justin Langer stated that Warner has a painful injury which is akin to getting shot by a gun. He further asserted that Warner is doing everything possible to get fit on time, however, if he misses out, it will be a major loss.
"He's strained his abductor in his groins and they tell me it's a very painful injury," Langer told SEN's Sportsday WA. "It looked like he got shot by a gun. He was in incredible pain in the changerooms after. We've just arrived in Canberra, so we won't see him again for probably five or six days until we get back to Sydney.
"I'm not holding my breath that he'll be ready for the first Test match, but with that said he's the sort of elite professional who will be doing literally everything possible to be ready for it. We'll see what happens, but he's going to be a loss that's for sure."
There has been a selection dilemma between Joe Burns and Will Pucovski for the openers slot but if Warner doesn't get fit on time, they both might well open. Langer said that picking teams is the hardest part of the job but he feels relaxed that they won the ODI series.
"It takes a bit of pressure off, doesn't it?" Langer said with a laugh. "No wonder I'm a bit more relaxed. We've won a few games and I don't have to worry about who we're going to pick for the Test side.
"I've said it so many times, the hardest part of the job is selecting the teams, but we've got an Australia A game starting in a few days and it'll be a good opportunity for those guys against the Indian A side to put their hand up.
"And then after that is another Australia A game versus the actual Indian Test side at the SCG under lights with a pink ball. We'll work out who's going to play in that game and certainly there's huge opportunities for people to put their hand up."