Why David Warner will be sorely missed by Aussie cricket fans - despite what they say

The veteran opener will play the final Test match of his career against Pakistan at the SCG.

David Warner, pictured here before the final Test match of his cricket career.
David Warner looks on before the final Test match of his cricket career. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)

You may not like him, you may question his moral compass and you may be counting the minutes until he's out the door of the Australian Test team. But there is one inescapable truth about David Warner – you will miss him when he's gone.

If not the person, then the batsman. Warner has been part of our Test team for more than a decade, punctuated by the sandpaper scandal/suspension for which his detractors will never forgive him.

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He has taken on the toughest job in cricket – facing the new ball – and scored close to 8700 runs. Much like Adam Gilchrist, he has redefined his role and made it so much harder for those to come.

Australians now expect at least one of their openers to take on the bowling from the get-go and either set up big totals or chase them down at a rapid rate. Let this sink in: Warner's strike rate sits at 70.26. Matthew Hayden was considered a dasher with a SR of 60.10.

What's the bet those who claim they'll be happy to see the back of Warner after this week's third Test against Pakistan are the ones pining for him in 12 months' time when India's elite bowling attack is dissecting our batting line-up? Former Australia captain Greg Chappell, writing in Nine Newspapers, said of Warner: "He always looked like he had a purpose. That purpose was to make runs, which he often did. And usually when his team, or he, needed them. No innings of David’s was boring. Any runs were kinetic and often frenetic."

David Warner, pictured here alongside Steve Smith and Usman Khawaja.
David Warner alongside Steve Smith and Usman Khawaja. (Photo by Morgan Hancock - CA/Cricket Australia via Getty Images)

David Warner will be sorely missed in Australian cricket

And it was that way right from his very first Test, way back in December 2011 against New Zealand at the Gabba. With Australia chasing a small victory margin of 19 – and after Warner had failed in the first innings – cricket norms would have the new boy finishing with a conservative eight or nine not out.

Not this bloke. Cricinfo's ball-by-ball commentary described it this way: "(Tim Southee) swings it towards the pads and he (Phil Hughes) whips it behind midwicket, Warner shows more urgency in the running and pushes for three.

"(Next ball) Four: That's why he wants the strike, short and wide and Warner will not let those go, carves it over gully, no problems."

Two overs later, Warner finished the job with back-to-back boundaries off Doug Bracewell, collecting 12 not out from four balls. The Kiwis got off lightly that day. Others weren't so fortunate.

Warner has been at the forefront of some of our finest cricketing moments and front and centre at one of our darkest. He is impossible to ignore.

That famous Canadian-American all-rounder Joni Mitchell told us you don’t know what you've got 'til it’s gone. That's not quite true when it comes to DA Warner.

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