Aus to field unchanged XI at MCG; Warner having trouble in running

David Warner is batting well at the nets but he is still ‘having a bit of trouble running at full speed’, said Australia head coach Justin Langer on Thursday as he confirmed that Australia will go in with an unchanged XI against India in the second Test that begins Saturday at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

“Davey (David Warner) had a good hit yesterday. He is still a way off his running. We know how dynamic he is. There is no one who is more dynamic than him in the game between the wickets and the way he fields. We want to make sure that he gets 100 per cent fit for that because he gets energy personally out of that and as a group we get great energy,” said Langer while speaking to the reporters.

“We are very hopeful. He batted well and is moving well. He is enthusiastic as ever. He has got so much energy and passion and has been doing it for last three weeks. He is doing everything to get back onto the ground. He is having a bit of trouble running at full speed. When he gets back his full confidence, he will come back in our team…we will monitor him and we will have him back, not just for our team… everyone loves to see him play cricket, he is great for the theatre, performance and entertainment of Test cricket. So we will welcome him as soon as he gets fit,” added Langer.

The head coach further confirmed that Australia will field the same XI that featured in the first Test at the Adelaide Oval which the hosts won by eight wickets.

“I would be a pretty courageous man to change the XI for this Test match after the last one. At this stage unlikely…Unless something happens over the next few days, and they can happen in the world we live in, we’ll go in with the same XI,” the 50-year-old said.

The unchanged XI will mean that young all-rounder Cameron Green also gets to play. Green provides a bowling option and bats in lower middle-order. Although he didn’t have success in the first Test, Langer was all praise of him.

“He is so calm. That is what I love about him. For a young guy, he is so calm. He gets on with his job. He has got a really simple batting technique for a guy who is tall. Usually with a lot of tall batsmen, they are very clunky and a bit slow. But he is so fluid. He is a beautiful player. I have always said you judge the best players in the world with the way they can play the on-drive and he consistently over and over again keeps smacking the on-drive past the bowler. It means his balance is good, he is watching the ball and playing with the full phase of the bat. I love is temperament. Love his skills. He is fitting in well. He is at the start of a hopefully a very long journey. He is going to have ups and downs. To play first Boxing Day Test, nice journey,” said Langer of Green.

Langer also informed that the team management is keeping in touch with opener-in-line Will Pucovski who is out of the team due to concussion problems.

“We are keeping in touch. Lots of people are in touch with Will. It is tough to do face to face but with modern technology, with zoom, whatsapp we are doing it. We’ll keep in touch and see how he is progressing,” Langer said ahead of the second Test that will be broadcast live on Sony Ten 1, Sony Ten 3 and Sony Six.