Dave Warner might be shouldering arms to the ODI tour of Zimbabwe, but Cricket Australia boss James Sutherland says that doesn’t mean a fair dinkum national squad won’t be sent.
Preparing to become a first-time father, big-hitting opener Warner has coach Darren Lehmann’s blessing to skip the August tri-series with Zimbabwe and South Africa in the wake of his long and hectic campaign including back-to-back Ashes series and the South Africa tour.
However, his absence doesn’t indicate the tour will be treated as a rest window for other stars, says Sutherland.
He said the tri-series was the squad’s only chance to prepare for their important October tour of the United Arab Emirates against Pakistan – currently ranked fourth in Tests, sixth in ODIs, and third in T20s.
“They’re a very good team, who play very well in those conditions, and having had so much time off it’s really important for our guys to get some cricket under their belts.”
Sutherland added he wasn’t aware of anybody else who had requested time off for the Zimbabwe tour.
“There’s obviously a couple of quicks who are under injury clouds, but outside of that if there’s any sort of plans I’m not aware of them at this stage,” he said.
Meanwhile, CA announced that international cricket will return to Canberra’s Manuka Oval this year when Australia host South Africa for an ODI on November 19.