For openers, Poms en­joy field day over our odd cou­ple

Townsville Bulletin - - SPORT -

FOR a cou­ple of blokes who ap­par­ently can’t stand the sight of each other, Chris Rogers and David Warner looked pretty good out there for a while.

Ques­tion is, would Warner have kept his head – and his wicket – longer than 15 overs, 38 runs and a part­ner­ship of 78, if he and Rogers had the close re­la­tion­ship of, say, Matthew Hay­den and Justin Langer?

What started as a peb­ble­sized men­tion in a news­pa­per last week about the con­trast­ing per­son­al­i­ties of the pair, de­scrib­ing them as “not close”, has gath­ered strength with each re- telling. Not close, has be­come, “dis­like” and, at last telling, “don’t talk”.

For­mer Eng­land play­er­turned com­men­ta­tor David Lloyd de­scribed a sce­nario dur­ing the first ses­sion at Lord’s where one might walk up the pitch to the other and ask, “is it swing­ing?”, only to be told, “I’m not telling you”.

The last time Aus­tralia played at Lord’s, Warner was in ex­ile af­ter belt­ing Eng­land bats­man Joe Root in a pub.

This time, he be­gan the tour in the dog­house with coach Dar­ren Lehmann and cap­tain Michael Clarke af­ter sug­gest­ing in an in­ter­view they had sent him into matches with in­struc­tions to sledge ri­vals.

Clarke made a point of set­ting the record straight in his first press con­fer­ence af­ter ar­riv­ing in Eng­land. Warner’s stocks in the dress­ing room won’t have im­proved af­ter fall­ing twice in con­sec­u­tive in­nings to rash shots.

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