Former England captain Michael Vaughan has claimed the Aussies' bright start to the Test Championship final is an 'ominous' start for England as David Warner found some form ahead of the Ashes. Australia started with a setback, but Travis Head and Steve Smith worked together superbly to put their team in a solid position after day 1 against India at The Oval.
Warner showed signs that the pressure hadn't got to him having scored a solid 43 to start off his campaign in England in good form. With Head finishing on 143 not out and Smith 95 not out, Australia look to build a formidable lead in the final against a bewildered Indian outfit.
And Vaughan claimed that the early signs for the Aussies didn't bode well for England. He also alluded to the Duke ball not moving as much, which was a reason for concern last year. The issue was raised in 2022 in the fifth Test match between England and India.
Stuart Broad took aim at the ball in August last year and Vaughan might have been referring to the same issue upon first glance. "Ominous signs. David Warner looks in the mood. These Duke balls are not doing anything like as much as old Duke balls," he wrote.
James Anderson also commented on the balls last year, but it remains to be seen whether the same issues will occur and the balls lose their shape earlier than expected.
David Warner's promising start in England
Regardless, Warner's start after dealing with the pressure of losing his spot at the top of the order will silence the doubters for a little bit longer. And while he didn't make the statement he would have hoped, Warner probably did enough to buy himself time having scored a solid 43 to set-up Australia's innings.
Ominous signs … D Warner looks in the mood … !! These Duke balls are not doing anything like as much as old Duke balls … #Ashes
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) June 7, 2023
Aussie cricket great Matthew Hayden was left impressed with Warner's innings, which saw him take the ball on early and played more to his trademark style. "You can see from his body language that he was right into the match," Hayden said on Channel 7 commentary. "When the sun started flowing, so too did the runs. He was brilliant."
Hayden's former batting partner, and former Australian coach, Justin Langer echoed the sentiment on Warner. "He played off the front foot and the back foot...that's a sign David Warner's in good form," he said in commentary. As Vaughan alluded to, this could be a scary sign for the English if Warner is finding form in the twilight of his career ahead of his final Ashes series.
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