New Delhi: Australia batting great Ricky Ponting believes left-handed opener David Warner missed the ideal timing of retiring from the format after playing the Test match against South Africa at Sydney earlier this year.
Warner was ruled out of Australia’s ongoing tour of India after being mid-way out of the second Test in New Delhi due to concussion and picked up a hairline fracture in elbow too.
“Look, I was on radio a couple of days ago, back here in Australia, and I thought the absolute best time for Davey to retire, if he was thinking about it at all, was after the Sydney Test match here in Australia.”
“He’d just played his 100th Test in Melbourne, and obviously got 200 in the first innings down there. And to bow out in front of his home crowd is obviously the way that every player would like to finish their careers.”
“Who knows now that opportunity might not come around again for Davey, you know. That’s nearly another 12 months away,” said Ponting in an episode of The ICC Review show.
Warner’s Test form has been a concern since 2022, making just 607 runs at an average of 26.39 in 14 matches, including a double-century in the Boxing Day Test against South Africa last year.
With Australia sealing a spot in the World Test Championship final, to be held at The Oval in London from June 7-11, Ponting is expecting Warner to play the prestigious match, followed by the Ashes later in the month. Warner averages only 26.04 from 13 Tests in England.
“I think they’ll definitely want to play him in the World Test Championship match. They have got some really big decisions to make, leading into the Ashes (in England) as well. A bit like some of the selection issues they had coming to India.”
“They’re probably going to have similar things to think about when they get to the UK because David’s record in the UK is not as strong as it is in some other places around the world.”
“But I don’t think it’s the end of David Warner, I think they’ll bring him back for that one game. If he does well there, then I think he’ll probably start the Ashes and see from there.”
Ponting also remarked that Warner, 36, deserves to finish his Test career on his terms. “Look, I’d love it if he could do that. It’d be fitting if he could do that, finish in front of his home crowd. But he’s going to have to play really well between now and then for that to happen. And in my own heart of hearts, I hope that’s the case.”
“I think his career deserves to finish the way he wants it to. Sort of not to be dropped or tapped on the shoulder in the middle of an overseas tour and have his career end in that way.”
“That’s why I just hope he can find it within himself to score a lot of runs between now and next summer. If he does, then next summer might be the ideal opportunity for him.”