David Warner was all smiles as he proved his fitness in Brisbane.
David Warner was all smiles as he proved his fitness in Brisbane.

Maxie gets nod but Warner full of confidence

GLENN Maxwell has been called up as cover for David Warner, but the star vice-captain is confident he will be fit to take his place in the Ashes opener at the Gabba.

Warner, battling a sore neck, got through an extended training session on Wednesday, facing throwdowns in the nets from assistant coach John Davison.

It would take a major setback from here to stop Warner opening the batting on day one, but selectors are taking no chances by summonsing Maxwell.

Aussie captain Steve Smith said it was likely selectors would call in an "in-form" player to provide cover, with a decision expected to be made in the coming hours.

Warner will continue to receive around the clock treatment and is giving every indication he will be right to go.

"He's very confident and he says he'll be right to go," said Smith.

"There's a good chance someone will be in as cover but I'm not sure who at this stage ... they're thinking about it at the moment.

"He'll be OK. It's part and parcel of playing cricket. Guys have injuries every now and then, and have little niggles.

"He said he'll even bat like Shivnarine Chanderpaul (famous for his front-on stance at the crease) if he has to.

"He's improved a fair bit over the last 24 hours and hopefully he can keep improving and be 100 per cent at 10am."

Glenn Maxwell gets the nod as the shadow player.
Glenn Maxwell gets the nod as the shadow player.

Losing Warner would rank as one of the greatest pre-Ashes blows in history, but at least Maxwell would provide an extra bowling option for the captain, currently lacking in the squad.

The opener gave the thumbs up to cameras when he arrived at training on Wednesday morning and played more expansive shots the longer his net session went on.

The powerful left-hander went through his paces with selector Trevor Hohns and physio David Beakley watching on.

Warner twinged his neck on Tuesday, when taking an overhead catch during a fielding drill.


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