Warner to miss first two ODIs against West Indies, Khawaja named replacement

David Warner (R) being attended by Australia team support staff after he was hit on the hand © Getty Images

Melbourne: Jan 30, 2013

Dashing Australian opener David Warner suffered a fracture on his thumb while training, putting a question mark on his availability for the Test tour of India, starting next month.

Just a day before the announcement of the squad for the four-match Test tour of India, Warner was struck by a Mitchell Johnson delivery in the lively WACA nets ahead of the home ODI series against the West Indies.

Warner was seen in obvious pain after copping the blow, but reports said the scans cleared him of a serious fracture.

“David Warner was struck on the left thumb by Mitchell Johnson in the nets,” Australian team physio Kevin Sims said.

“While the fracture is very minor, it is not worth taking any risks. The injury will keep him out of at least the next two matches against the West Indies. We’ll assess how he is progressing after that to determine his availability for the remainder of the series,” he added.

Australia play a five-match ODI series against the West Indies from February 1 to 10.

Warner has barely three weeks left to recover if he has to board the flight for India for the four-Test series, starting February 22 in Chennai.

The Australian selectors may pick Warner when the Test squad is announced tomorrow, besides also naming a standby batsman in case he fails to recover in time.

Should Warner miss the tour of India, it would allow fit-again all-rounder Shane Watson to return to his favoured opening slot.

Watson has been riddled by injuries over the past few years and is now keen to return to the Test arena purely as a batsman in order to avoid any more niggles.

Warner, one of the most explosive hitters in world cricket, has averaged 44.5 from 15 Tests, 30.37 from 38 ODIs and 28.71 from 44 T20Is.