Warner missed ‘absolute best time’ to retire, says Ponting

SYDNEY (Reuters): David Warner missed the ideal opportunity to end his career, former Australia captain Ricky Ponting said, adding that the opener should have retired in front of his home crowd after hitting a double-century in his 100th test.

Apart from his defiant 200 against South Africa in December, the 36-year-old’s test form has been poor, leading to speculation he might retire.

Warner flew back to Australia last month from India after suffering a fractured elbow and a concussion in the second test of the four-match series.

“… I thought the absolute best time for Davey to retire, if he was thinking about it at all, was after the Sydney test match here in Australia,” Ponting told the ICC Review programme in an interview published on Sunday.

“He’d just played his 100th test in Melbourne, and obviously got 200 in the first innings down there. And to bow out in front of his home crowd is obviously the way that every player would like to finish their careers.

“Who knows now that opportunity might not come around again for Davey. That’s nearly another 12 months away.”

Australia’s victory over India in the third test confirmed their place in the World Test Championship final, with Ponting saying Warner will likely have a place in the team for the final in June as well as the Ashes series in England.

“(Australia) have got some really big decisions to make, leading into the Ashes as well,” added Ponting, who retired from international cricket in 2012.

“I don’t think it’s the end of David Warner, I think they’ll bring him back for that one game. If he does well there, then I think he’ll probably start the Ashes and see from there.”