Blood injections helped stimulate David Warner’s recovery from a torn groin, but the short turnaround between the third and fourth Tests has cast fresh doubt over Australia’s brutal opener playing out the series.
Warner’s expected return at the SCG on Thursday now hinges on his agility in the field – and not at the crease – with Australia still seething at dropping eight catches in the Boxing Day Test loss to India.
If Warner can be trusted to gobble catches diving to his left and right in the slips then he will play in Sydney, 39 days after ripping his groin at the same ground.
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Australia may only Warner available for one of the remaining two Tests.Source:Getty Images
But the four-day gap between Tests means a blazing Warner knock at the SCG could put such a strain on his groin that it would be difficult to also play at the Gabba.
“It would probably be quite difficult, especially if I spend time out in the middle, to back up,” Warner said.
“I can only judge that if I get up to play the (SCG) game and then get through it.
“I might have to try and do some rehab in between on those days to keep strengthening it up.”
The Sydney Test runs from January 7-11 before players fly to Brisbane on January 12, where they will be locked in hotel quarantine outside of playing the January 15-19 Test at the Gabba.
“If I don’t score any runs (at the SCG), I’ll be doing everything I can to keep working on that rehab if I’m sitting back in the changerooms,” Warner said.
Warner hasn’t played sicne tearing his groin early in December.Source:AFP
“It’s going to be a task, but I’m up for that. I know I’ve got a couple of weeks off after that before that next series.”
While Warner said he would not be 100 per cent fit by next Thursday, the 34-year-old declared batting and running between the wickets would not pose a problem and if he could lunge in the field, he could nurse himself through the match.
News Corp understands Warner received two injections filled with his own blood shortly after ripping his groin on November 29.
The platelet-rich plasma injections are administered straight into the tendon to help accelerate recovery and Warner also visited a holistic health clinic in Darlinghurst daily.
Warner struggled to move around bed and climb in and out of a car for the first two weeks of December and conceded he wouldn’t be 100 per cent when the third Test starts on Thursday.
“I’ll be doing everything I can to play,” Warner, 34, said.
Warner and Sean Abbott couldn’t mix with the Aussies during the MCG Test.Source:Getty Images
“Even if that means I’m not 100 per cent, I’ll be doing everything I can to let the selectors give me that green light.
“I jumped in the hyperbaric chamber to get some oxygen into the blood to try and heal.
“Some penguin cryotherapy, which is basically ice put on the tendon area to fast-track that as well.
“When it comes to these tendon issues they hang around for quite a while and it’s quite hard to get through that pain threshold.”
Warner has rejoined Australia’s Test squad and will train at the MCG with teammates at 2pm on Saturday and Sunday.
Young Victorian Will Pucovski remains a chance to make his Test debut opening the batting with Warner despite being pulled from Sunday’s press conference, with Matthew Wade set to speak instead.
Will Pucovski still has to get ticked off mentally and physically.Source:Getty Images
Pucovski still has to be ticked off mentally and physically but is pushing hard to strengthen Australia’s top order at the SCG.
Warner said his limited mobility had forced him to bat “nice and tight” in the MCG nets.
“It actually helped me, because I had to wait for the ball to be in my actual area – I didn’t have to throw my hands at it,” he said.
“You’re going to have some restrictions here and there, but when you get in the game adrenaline takes over as well.
“You don’t cast any doubt over the fact you can’t play those shots.
“It’s about my speed between wickets – that’s all that matters.
“It doesn’t matter what shots I can and can’t play, it’s about the drop and run and helping the guy at the other end get off strike.”
Originally published asSCG or Gabba? Why Warner will struggle to play both Tests
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