A moving ball and bowler-friendly conditions could be behind David Warner’s 25 per cent drop in strike rate so far in this World Cup, according to Glenn Maxwell.
Warner sits sixth on the run-scoring lists at this year’s tournament, having hit two half-centuries in the opening three games.
Usually one of the most aggressive openers in world cricket with a strike rate of 96.55 before his 12-month suspension last year, Warner has gone at just 71.84 in his first three games back for Australia.
Of the 20 players to have scored 100 or more runs in the tournament so far, New Zealand’s Kane Williamson (69.59) and Warner are the only players with a strike rate of less than 80.
“It might be the conditions, it might be the ball,” Maxwell said.
“It seems to be doing a little bit more than I expected over here. We all expected big 500 scores and balls to be pinging away all over the place.
“But the ball has started swinging in the 5-10 over mark rather than straight away and then stopping.
“It’s seaming, the bounce is a little more variable. I noticed the boys said after batting at Trent Bridge the wicket was up and down and hard work.”
The pre-tournament hype at this World Cup was around high scoring, but teams have been surprised to see totals of around 280 being enough to win most matches.
Warner spoke after his comeback game against Afghanistan about the challenges of returning from a year of exclusively playing Twenty20 cricket, where he was not required to move his feet as much as he is in the longer formats.
His half-century against India on Sunday was the slowest of his one-day career, using up 84 balls for his 56 runs.
More uncharacteristic was the amount of dot balls he played. Usually one of the busiest batsmen between the wickets, Warner played out 50 dots in Australia’s attempted chase of 5-352, including 14 in a row at one point.
He also used up 114 balls in scoring an unbeaten 89 against Afghanistan in Australia’s tournament opener, although the speed of his innings mattered little as his side cruised to victory.
But Australia will take solace in the fact that even on his off days, Warner is able to produce runs.
“Davey obviously didn’t have his best day but he was able to bat a little (bit) of time rather than throwing it away early,” Maxwell said.
“He was able to bat deeper for us, which was a key thing for us. Unfortunately, the first big risk he took he got out. If he’s gets it right, he’s away.
“One of those guys can be the guy who gets the hundred and we can bat around them and really give that total a shake.”
2019 World Cup
Australia’s squad: Aaron Finch (c), Jason Behrendorff, Alex Carey (wk), Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa
June 12: Australia v Pakistan, Taunton
June 15: Sri Lanka v Australia, The Oval
June 20: Australia v Bangladesh, Trent Bridge
June 25: England v Australia, Lord’s
July 9: Semi-Final 1, Old Trafford
July 11: Semi-Final 2, Edgbaston
July 14: Final, Lord’s
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For a full list of all World Cup fixtures, click HERE