Saturday 3 September 2011 

Ponting Flying Home, Warner In As Standby

Ponting Flying Home, Warner In As Standby
Ponting Flying Home, Warner In As Standby
© REUTERS/Dinuka Liyanawatte (SRI LANKA - Tags: SPORT CRICKET) Picture Supplied by Action Images
 

Ricky Ponting will fly home to Australia to be present at the birth of his second child and will miss the second Test in Sri Lanka but plans to return for the third and final game in the series.

Left-hander David Warner has been called up to replace him in the squad as a standby player for the second game in Kandy, which gets underway on 8th September.

Warner, who hit the headlines when he made his Twenty20 International debut for Australia in 2008 before he had played a first-class match, has since played nine first-class games with a top score of 211 and an average of 53.35, including two matches for Australia A in Zimbabwe earlier this year.

He scored 211 in the opening game before making 48 and 82 in the second game, opening the innings alongside Phillip Hughes.

Usman Khawaja, who also toured Zimbabwe alongside Hughes and Warner, may be expected to move up the order to replace Ponting in the number three position which would leave Warner and Shaun Marsh competing for a position in the middle-order.

Other options would include playing Michael Hussey or Michael Clarke at three with two of Khawaja, Marsh and Warner slotting in at numbers five and six.

Australia lead the series 1-0 after an impressive 125-run win in the opening match in Galle - Ponting's 100th Test win.

© Cricket World 2011