David Warner put his bat away and banished a horror Ashes from his mind when he returned to Australia, convinced there wasn’t much more he could have done to overcome the stranglehold the England attack – and chiefly Stuart Broad – had over him from start to finish.
The five Tests brought him just 95 runs, the lowest tally for an opener to bat 10 times in a series, with 61 of them coming in a single innings at Headingley. Broad was his nemesis, removing him seven times with one of the most one-sided batsmen-bowler contests since in Test cricket.
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Warner exchanged notes with Broad after the series had finished and was full of respect for what he had been able to do against him, but secure in his mind that his game did not need a complete overhaul ahead of the Australia season – to such an extent that he only had his first net three days before New South Wales’ opening Sheffield Shield match where he scored an excellent century at the Gabba.
“Me and Harry [Marcus Harris] spoke about it. What can you do? If it’s in your first 10 balls and you get a good one, you can’t do anything,” Warner said. “I spoke to Broady about the one he bowled me at Lord’s and he said to me it’s probably one of the best balls he’s ever bowled, up the slope and nipping back in, it’s very difficult to do that repeatedly. I look back at that and just forget about it.”
Broad’s success against Warner came after the extensive work he had done on bowling round the wicket to left-handers, a tactic that has become a go-to for Broad over the last couple of years with impressive results. The Queensland quicks used that angle extensively – it appears he will see plenty of it in the future – and there were some moments of unease, especially against the tall Cameron Gannon.