Warner opts out of central contract, focuses on white-ball cricket till 2025



Semi-retired Cricketer David Warner to Continue White-Ball Cricket for Australia

David Warner’s Decision to Continue Playing White-Ball Cricket

Veteran opener David Warner has confirmed that he will continue to play white-ball cricket for Australia but has opted not to accept a central contract if offered by Cricket Australia next year. This decision comes after Warner announced his retirement from Test cricket in January next year, following the home series against Pakistan.

Warner’s Plans for the Future

Despite his impending retirement from Test cricket, the 37-year-old expressed his intention to play white-ball cricket for Australia until the ICC T20 World Cup in the USA and West Indies next year. He also hinted at the possibility of continuing until the 2025 ICC Champions Trophy in Pakistan. Warner cited the examples of former cricketers Brad Hogg, Chris Gayle, and Shoaib Malik, all of whom continued playing limited-overs formats beyond the age of 40.

Warner’s Determination and Fitness

Warner emphasized his fitness and willingness to continue playing, stating, “My goal is still to set my sights on playing the Twenty20 World Cup in the Caribbean first (in June next year), and I think from there I’ll probably decide what I’m going to do with white-ball cricket. I’m still feeling fit. I’m very comfortable with what I’m doing.”

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Warner’s Stance on Central Contracts

Despite his commitment to white-ball cricket, Warner clarified that he will not accept a central contract as it would restrict his participation in franchise T20 leagues across the globe and impact sponsorship opportunities crucial at this stage of his career. He explained, “I won’t be taking a contract, definitely not. How the system works in Australia is that if you play five (T20) games or ODIs, or three Tests, you get upgraded and then you’re legally bound by contracting system with sponsors and stuff.”

Considerations for the Future

Warner highlighted the importance of assessing the schedule, including the ICC Future Tours schedule and the upcoming Champions Trophy, in making his future decisions. He added, “I’ve got to sit back and have a look at what the schedule is, the (ICC) Future Tours schedule and you’ve got a Champions Trophy that’s coming up as well. So they’re potentially on my horizon.”

Warner’s Concern for Young Cricketers

Warner expressed reluctance in accepting a central contract, stating, “It’s very difficult to say, ‘I want to play Twenty20s and one-dayers’, but you don’t want to be taking contracts from a young kid that’s coming through.” He emphasized the need to avoid denying promising young cricketers opportunities by accepting a central contract in the twilight of his career.

Conclusion

Warner’s decision to focus on white-ball cricket and his reluctance to take up a central contract reflect his consideration for the future of Australian cricket and his own career at this crucial juncture. As he looks ahead to the next phase of his sporting journey, Warner’s determination and calculated approach underscore the strategic decision-making characteristic of his illustrious cricketing career.

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