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We have to capitalise on the start - David Warner

David Warner celebrating his fifty against England on day one of the fifth Test at The Oval.
David Warner celebrating his fifty against England on day one of the fifth Test at The Oval.
©REUTERS / Action Images

Australian opening batsman David Warner has urged his team to capitalise on their good start against England on day one of the fifth Ashes Test at The Oval.

After being put in to bat, Australia got off to a solid start with openers Chris Rogers and Warner putting on a 110-run stand.

In overcast conditions and bowling on a green pitch, England were on target in the first session, but the Australian openers negotiated the bowling well as they played each ball on its merit.

The 28-year-old also revealed how he made slight changes to his game plan to tackle the swing and still be able to play his natural game.

“It was a very good day for us and a good toss to lose," Warner told Sky Sports.

“We knew early on it was going to be very tough conditions for us and I think there were 19 or 20 runs scored in the first hour, so positive signs for us moving forward for tomorrow.

“For us it was about leaving and respecting those good deliveries.

“I tried to bat outside my crease to Broady (Broad), and still play my natural game.

“Me and Chris, we left well today which put us in a great position coming into the lunch time.

“Getting off to none for hundred is a great start.

“I felt the England bowlers bowled well, but today was our day.” 

This performance is in stark contrast to what the Australians produced at Trent Bridge, where they were bowled out for 60 in the first session itself.

Warner stated that it felt good to come back from that drubbing at Trent Bridge and show the opposition what their top order is capable of.

“To be bowled out for 60 in the first innings of the last test was disappointing.

“But to come out today and show what we are capable of, was fantastic from our top order.

“You always feel good when you can get through that first session, it was a very tough one.

“At the moment, we are trying to capitalise as much as we can.” 

Warner batted well to get into the eighties, but he was undone by Moeen Ali, who foxed him by bowling a straighter one first, and then following it up with an off-break that found the edge.

The 28-year-old credited Moeen for bowling well and inducing doubts in his mind regarding that particular delivery.

“That is what happens to left-hand batters with off-spinners.

“You got to play that line of the delivery and at that time I feel ‘if I leave that, I could get bowled or I could get out leg before’.

“So you just have to play the ball on its merit and credit to the bowler (for getting the wicket).” 

Warner has been a consistent performer at the top of the order for Australia in the series, having scored 418 runs at an average of 46.44 with five fifties, but hasn’t had a three-figure score yet. 

Appreciating the England bowlers for bowling tight lines at him, Warner said that it has been a tough challenge so far.

“Credit to the way England has bowled, especially in the first innings.

“Take out the second Test, I think I’ve been out to very good bowling.

“They have drawn me to (play my) drives, they bowled real tight lines to myself and Chris upfront.

“It is always good to get some runs on the board, but it is exciting to get a challenge when you are out there.” 

England have been producing a variety of pitches for the games in the ongoing Ashes series, something that the Australian batsmen are finding tough to deal with.

The pitches at Cardiff and Lord’s were flat, whereas the ones in Edgbaston, Trent Bridge and The Oval, have been bowler-friendly.

“No. Not at all,” answered Warner when asked if ever got truly settled on the pitches.

“Today Steve Smith was about on 20, and he said to me, ‘I feel like I am in no rhythm’.

“I told him ‘mate I am on 80 and I don’t feel like I am in yet’.

“It is quite challenging, the conditions over here. You have to adapt to it, you have to adapt fast.” 

Having got off to a steady start on day one, Australia will be desperate to get a commanding total on board.

With the new ball just a couple of deliveries away, Warner stressed on the importance of seeing off the first session to seize the opportunity at hand.

“It is very important. It is like today, we have to really get through that first session (tomorrow) and bat big like we did at Lord’s.

“We are in the right position at the moment, but we have to really capitalise on it, tomorrow.” 

Australia managed 287 for three in 79.4 overs at stumps on day one after bad light ruled out further play. 

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