David Warner's agent labels Mitchell Johnson 'sad'

David Warner’s agent labels Mitchell Johnson ‘sad’ after withering attack on opening batter as he insists veteran does NOT want a Sydney swansong  

  • David Warner’s manager has defended him 
  • Warner’s place in the team has been questioned 
  • James Erskine says there are no better candidates 

David Warner’s manager has defended his client amid strong criticism from Mitchell Johnson over the opener’s inclusion in Australia’s Test team. 

Warner’s place at the top of the order has been called into question after a string of torrid performances for his country. The 37-year-old has his sights set on a farewell party at the SCG, but Johnson claims he is not deserving of one given his role in the sandpaper scandal in 2018.

He also questioned the integrity and professionalism of selector George Bailey, claiming he is too close to the playing group.

Across 2023, Warner has averaged 22.81 in Tests, putting him ninth among Aussie batters. 

James Erskine, Warner’s agent, has labelled Johnson’s tirade ‘a bit sad’ and defended the opener’s form.

James Erskine has backed his client David Warner amid strong criticism of his selection


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‘Mitchell Johnson was a fine player … and he’s entitled to his opinion. But at the end of the day what surprises me is all these ex-cricketers who basically have a crack at the current lot,’ he said on SEN’s Sportsday.

‘You would never get that happening in golf where Arnold Palmer was criticising Nick Faldo, or Chrissie Evert having a crack at somebody else who was currently playing (tennis).

‘I think it’s a bit sad in a way. I’m sure they have an opinion but I think it’s to get a headline.

‘My black Labrador could work out who are the contenders to basically take the spot. Cameron Bancroft, there’s Matt Renshaw, there’s Marcus Harris. Collectively they have averages in the mid-20s … David Warner has played 109 Test matches and has a (career) average of 44.4, got over 8500 runs.

‘If anyone listening thought that David Warner wanted to play Test cricket for Australia if he didn’t think he was up to it, they’re wrong. He’s been a battler all his life, he’s a guy from the wrong side of the tracks, he’s a guy that’s gone and scraped a living and been very successful at it.

‘But he doesn’t want a swansong, he thinks he’s the best guy for the job. I think the figures show it.

Erskine says Warner is still the right man for the job at the top of Australia’s order

‘If he goes and gets two ducks in the first two Tests then they’ll drop him, but, you know, he won’t.’

He added: ‘If there was somebody sitting on the sidelines who was an absolute automatic to come in, bring ’em on.

‘David would say, ‘Be my guest, I’ll give you batting tips’, but the fact of the matter is, there isn’t.

‘I’m guessing but I won’t be far out, I think between Marcus Harris, Renshaw and Bancroft, they’ve probably got a total of 1500 runs between them.’

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