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I stand with Candice Warner: Why targeting cricket's most famous WAG is misguided

Mitchell Johnson's personal attack on David Warner's wife Candice is largely pointless - because she doesn't care.

Candice Warner and Mitchell Johnson.
Candice Warner doesn't care what Mitchell Johnson or anyone thinks about her. Image: Getty

OPINION

Once again Candice Warner finds herself in the crossfire without having picked a fight. Mitchell Johnson doubled down on his explosive – if not a touch naïve - newspaper column attacking David Warner, later admitting he wrote it, in part, with vengeance coursing through his veins.

Primary school stuff, but anyway. Johnson explained how strong text messages David Warner sent him after he had criticised Candice's comments on 'The Back Page' – she had defended her husband's place in the Test team prior to the Ashes – set him off like a lithium battery.

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All that built-up anger and tension came out in last weekend's drama-inducing the article where Johnson questioned why Warner deserved a farewell tour from Test cricket this summer. There was nothing wrong with his opinion - nor him expressing it – and plenty agree with him.

But the nasty and personal tone undermined some of the good stuff. And, again caught in the middle, was Candice.

I've had infrequent dealings with Candice over the years and always found her fun, engaging, candid, helpful and quotable. Those who have worked with her on radio and TV sing a similar tune.

Yes, she's got opinions but you don’t last long on panel shows without them. If Candice is on air, you’re hardly going to ask her how the surf is at Maroubra or the price of paleo bowls at Bondi.

You want insight and strong opinion delivered with a splash of humour and provocation – and on this front she delivers in spades. That she happens to be married to one of Australia's highest profile – and polarising - sportsmen is a double-edged sword.

David and Candice Warner, pictured here at the Australian Cricket Awards.
David and Candice Warner at the Australian Cricket Awards in 2023. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

Candice Warner doesn't care if you don't like her

It gives the audience a glimpse into one of Australia's top national sporting teams and its inner workings. But it also allows the haters to zero in on her like heat seeking missiles. Not that she gives a rat's.

"I've got really thick skin so if people don't like what I'm saying then they're at least watching and that's fine by me," she told Yahoo Sport Australia earlier this year. "I know what I say comes from either a place of doing a lot of research or I understand where people are coming from.

"As long I have an opinion and they have an opinion on my opinion, then that's fine. People aren’t always going to love me. They might sometimes agree with what I'm saying and sometimes they won't, but that's all part and parcel of being in the media."

I don't expect the campaign to gain much traction – just check the social media comments on this story for confirmation - but here we go: #istandwithCandice. You don’t have to like Candice Warner, but life would be a lot duller without her.

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