Cricket-Warner had no choice but to abandon leadership bid: players union chief

FILE PHOTO: Cricket - ICC Men's T20 World Cup Final - New Zealand v Australia- Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai, United Arab Emirates - November 14, 2021 Australia's David Warner in action REUTERS/Satish Kumar

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Australia batsman David Warner was left with no choice but to abandon the bid to have his leadership ban overturned due to problems with the review process, players union chief Todd Greenberg said on Friday.

Warner pulled his application to have his permanent leadership banned citing concerns that the review panel wanted to turn his case into a "public trial" of his part in the Newlands ball-tampering scandal.

Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) boss Greenberg said governing body Cricket Australia (CA) had "lost control" when it outsourced the review process to an independent panel.

"The second point I’d make is the code of conduct amendments that had been introduced by CA were that the review would be conducted privately unless there was very good reason for it not to be," Greenberg said on SEN radio on Friday.

"So why the panel decided the issue needed to be a public hearing after both CA and David agreed the matter be held privately is beyond me, and I think lacks a real level of common sense."

CA set up the review panel nine months after the ACA wrote to the cricket board in support of Warner's bid to have his leadership ban lifted four years on from Newlands.

Greenberg said the review was not designed to be an appeal of the original offence but a "forward-looking process about remorse and rehabilitation".

"The process became a long way removed from the one David agreed to participate in, that’s why I don’t think David had much choice to do what he did," he added.

CA on Wednesday said it respected Warner's decision to drop his bid and had wanted the review to be held behind closed doors.

The saga has overshadowed the ongoing second test against West Indies at Adelaide Oval, where former test vice captain Warner scored 21 for the hosts in the first innings on Thursday.

Captain Pat Cummins, who is missing the test with injury, said he had spoken to Warner and that he was "doing great".

"We really support David and he's a huge member of our side and he's been fantastic with me throughout my whole career," Cummins said late on Thursday.

"In this side he's been an awesome leader, especially in the last few years. He has our absolute support and we really back him and respect his decision."

(Reporting by Ian Ransom in Melbourne; Editing by Peter Rutherford)

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