Injured batsman David Warner has been excluded from Australia’s biosecure bubble for the second Test against India in Melbourne on 26 December.
Warner would have missed the Test with the groin injury that kept him out of last week’s series opener in Adelaide. In line with the team’s “bio-security protocols”, paceman Sean Abbott is also out after he too left the bubble for treatment on an injury. Australia won the first match in the four-Test series by eight wickets. “While neither player has been in a specific hotspot as outlined by NSW Health, Cricket Australia’s bio-security protocols do not allow them to re-join the squad in time for the Boxing Day Test,” said governing body Cricket Australia. The players will not be replaced in the squad for the Melbourne Test, making it likely that Australia will stick with the makeshift opening partnership of Joe Burns and Matthew Wade.
It remains unclear whether a Covid-19 outbreak in Sydney, that has led to state border closures, will affect the third Test, which is due to start there on 7 January. “I know Cricket Australia’s doing everything in their power to have the Test match in Sydney but we’ll know more in a couple of days,” said off-spinner Nathan Lyon. “Fingers crossed it’s in Sydney, but more importantly hopefully everyone stays safe and can have a decent Christmas.”