Warner certain to play ODI against England: Steve Smith

Speaking ahead of the 1st ODI in MCG, Australian captain Steve Smith spoke about David Warner. The mercurial opener, Warner, has had to sit out of a couple of training sessions due to illness. However, he was seen doing light jogging during the fag end of Australia’s last session, and some people believe that he might make it for the 1st ODI.

After thrashing England 4-0 in the 5 match Ashes series, Steve Smith and his team will now shift their focus in inflicting the same result on England in the 5 match ODI series. The news prior to the series starting has surrounded the surprise exclusion of Glenn Maxwell from the squad after his good form in the recent domestic matches.

2017 wasn’t the best of year’s for Australia in the ODI format as they won just 5 of their 15 matches, including an early exit from Champions Trophy. On the other hand, England have enjoyed quite a bit of success in the 50-over format.

In the press conference, Smith confirmed the same. He said, “I think he’s ok, he was having a bit of a gastro issue yesterday. He turned up here today and walked the oval a few times. He said he’ll be fine so I don’t think there’ll be any trouble there.”

The Australian captain also spoke about the exclusion of Glenn Maxwell and his recent meeting with him. “That’s between me and Glenn. It was good to catch up, I get on really well with Glenn,” he told the reports present at the venue. “That’s a big reason (Maxwell’s subpar international form) why he is not here at the moment… we need those runs in the middle and it’s crucial that we find them.”

With Maxwell out of the squad and Lynn still injured, Australian camp have recalled veteran Cameron White, who will most probably go straight into the starting XI at his home ground.

The main concern for Smith right now is finding the middle-order combination ahead of the 2019 World Cup. While the opener Warner and Finch have been in good nick over the past few months, it is the middle-order which has struggled to build on the base set by the top order. He concluded the press conference by saying, “The middle order has probably been where we have had a bit of an issue.Davey (Warner) has been exceptional in one-day cricket opening for the past few years, Finchy (Aaron Finch) played well in the last series in India. The middle order is a key area for us to focus on.’

We need runs out of that area, and wickets in hand to have an onslaught at the back end of the game.”