Australian opener David Warner says he is feeling fitter than ever despite missing two of the last three years of cricket and making it to the 2023 ODI World Cup remains his “ultimate goal”.
The COVID-19 pandemic, which has so far infected more than 40 lakh people globally, has brought all cricket activities to a halt and derailed Australia’s upcoming international schedule.
“In the last three years I’ll have had almost two years off, depending on when we play cricket again,” Warner, who lost 12 months due to a ban for ball-tampering in 2018, was quoted as cricket.com.au.
“The longevity in your body helps. The get ups of training and playing gets harder as you get older but I haven’t felt any fitter in my career than I do now.
“As the legs get older time will tell. At the moment I’m feeling as fit as a fiddle and if I can keep running between wickets as well as I have done, who knows. That (2023 ODI) World Cup is the ultimate goal.”
The 33-year-old said next year’s T20 World Cup in India might be a good time to step away from the shortest format to allow selectors include young blood in the team.
“There’s back-to-back Twenty20 World Cups, and I started my career with Twenty20 cricket, and I think it’s important we’ve got younger kids coming through and they get a sniff and a chance of playing at this level as well.
“We’re seeing a lot of guys and talent coming through Australian cricket (and) I think it’s important we’re leaving those opportunities open there.
“At that stage you will probably get two spots open up in the team with me and Finchy (Aaron Finch). He wants to go to that World Cup in three years’ time as well, so there’s going to be a few spots available after that.”
There were reports that a window might be created for Australia’s international stars to play in the Big Bash League.
Warner, who hasn’t played a BBL game in last seven years, said he will take a call on whether to return to the domestic league depending on how the summer schedule pans out.
“All my decisions are based around how much playing and touring I’m doing in the summer,” said Warner, who last played a Big Bash game between the third and fourth Ashes Tests in the 2013-14 summer.
“It would be easy to sit here now and say ‘Yes, I’d like to play’ but I have to see what is happening at the end of the year. I’ll have to have a hard think about it depending on the schedule.”
The 33-year-old said he finds it difficult to switch between Tests and T20s.
“When I last played a game (BBL), my mindset in the next two Tests was cluttered between playing and not playing shots,” he said.
“I know that’s how I play but I’ve reined it in a lot over the last few years and don’t want to be putting myself into a situation again where I’m playing a Test match and then a T20 and then Tests again a few days later.
“I just want to have that one rhythm going into it.