David Warner was “shocked and disappointed” to lose both the captaincy and his place in Sunrisers Hyderabad’s XI at the Indian Premier League, where he faces an uncertain wait to return home.
Last-placed Hyderabad, whose brains trust is headed by Australians Tom Moody and Trevor Bayliss, recently installed Kane Williamson as skipper in an attempt to reboot their season. Sunrisers, who won their first IPL title under Warner’s captaincy in 2016, doubled down on the snub by dropping Warner for Sunday’s match against Rajasthan.
Favouring Afghan allrounder Mohammad Nabi ahead of Warner, whose IPL contract is worth approximately $2.3 million, resulted in another loss while raising eyebrows around the world.
New Zealand great Dan Vettori termed it staggering, while fellow ESPNcricinfo pundit Dale Steyn opined that Warner may have played his last game for the franchise.
Head coach Bayliss has already hinted Warner will not be rushed back, flagging a desire to “give some of the guy opportunities and not just disregarding them after one or two games”.
“He was charging around as 12th man, doing as much as he could for the team,” Bayliss said. “He’s been good, talking with Kane and some of the other players.”
Moody admitted Warner was “shocked and disappointed”. “We’d be disappointed if he wasn’t feeling that way,” Hyderabad’s director of cricket said. “But he has come to terms with the logic.”
It could be a long month for the opening batsman, who is among the Australians waiting for an update from their federal government as to whether a ban on incoming travellers from India could be extended beyond May 15.
The restriction was introduced because of India’s deadly second wave of COVID-19. The IPL runs until May 31.