Why David Warner had to be picked in Australia's T20 World Cup squad despite struggles

Warner's selection came despite growing calls for Jake Fraser-McGurk to be picked.

The question Australian cricket fans should be asking selectors is not why they picked David Warner for next month's T20 World Cup in the USA and Caribbean. It should be how in the hell could they leave him out?

You may not like Warner but it's hard to ignore the only currency that really matters – runs on the board at the elite level – when discussing whether he should have been given a final shot in Australian colours before retiring. The veteran's T20 international output over the past three years has been impressive, especially for a batsman in his twilight years.

Seen here, Aussie cricket star David Warner has been included in Australia's T20 Cricket World Cup squad.
David Warner was included in Australia's 15-man squad for the T20 Cricket World Cup in the USA and Caribbean. Pic: Getty

Since 2021, Warner has scored 834 runs at an average of a tick over 40. Just as impressively, he's scoring those runs at an average strike rate of around 150.

His 205 runs so far in 2024 – admittedly from a small sample size of four games - have come at a strike rate of 165.32.

That's the highest strike rate in his 15-year T20I career. Not bad for a bloke fast approaching his 38th birthday. Critics point out Warner's so-so form in the IPL in arguing for his omission from the World Cup squad while pushing the case of young gun Jake Fraser-McGurk.


JFM's Day will come. It may even arrive at this World Cup if Warner fails to overcome a hand injury. If the 22-year-old is good enough – and he certainly looks it – there will be plenty more T20 World Cup campaigns coming his way.

You don’t have to wait long. They're on every couple of years. Warner has form when he's out of form leading into a T20 World Cup. In 2021, he came off a poor IPL campaign with the Sunrisers Hyderabad and went on to become the second highest run-scorer – and player of the tournament - as Australia took out its maiden T20 World Cup title in the UAE.

David Warner was the player of the tournament at the 2021 World Cup. Pic: Getty
David Warner was the player of the tournament at the 2021 World Cup. Pic: Getty

Chairman of selectors George Bailey is backing him to produce the goods one last time. But that hasn’t stopped the trolls from ripping in, their dislike for Warner the person over-riding their assessment of Warner the batsman. The two need to be separated. Warner has consistently delivered in big tournaments and deserves a final chance to salute international cricket on a world stage.