David Warner may be pulled back into Ashes test
SWASHBUCKLING batsman David Warner is scheduled to leave London for Africa today to get some match practice with the Australian A team - but he might not be on the flight.
Former England captain Nasser Hussain said he believed Warner, dumped from the team last month after punching England batsman Joe Root at a hotel in Birmingham during a late night drinking session, could find himself still in London, preparing to replace the struggling Ed Cowan at No.3 in the second Test starting at Lord's on Thursday.
The Australian team heads to the capital 1-0 down in the series after the heroic 14-run loss at Trent Bridge yesterday, and Hussain said he thought Cowan, who was out for a first ball duck and 14 in his second dig, would be axed.
"I am not a fan of changing a team after one Test match in a series, but Cowan had such a poor game and I reckon the Aussie selectors will look at making a change there," Hussain, who played 96 Tests, said.
"My gut feeling is that Warner will come into the side because (coach) Darren Lehmann wants attacking, positive cricketers.
"He has seen the way the England attack can crumble when players go at them - he doesn't want any blockers in his side - Warner fits the bill."
As for England, the fact that Steven Finn bowled just 10 overs in the fourth and final innings (and only two on the last day - the first of those going for 15) suggests he is struggling for rhythm, and also that captain Alastair Cook has lost a little faith in the paceman.
Lord's is Finn's home ground, but the dry nature of the surfaces there may better suit fellow quick Tim Bresnan.
The hot, dry weather sems set to continue (as hard as that is to believe during an English 'summer') but the surface at Lord's should offer more pace and bounce than Nottingham.
Australia's defeat at Trent Bridge was their fifth in as many Test matches, but Lord's has proved to be a happy hunting ground over the years.
Incredibly, Australia has won more Tests at the home of cricket than at any other away ground.
Between 1899 and England's victory in 2009, their first against the Aussies at the venue in 75 years, Australia won 13, drew 13 and lost only once in the 20th century, in 1934.