Cricket-Warner not expecting affectionate farewell from NZ fans

  • Cricket
  • Monday, 19 Feb 2024

Cricket - ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 - Final - India v Australia - Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad, India - November 19, 2023 Australia's David Warner celebrates with the trophy after winning the ICC Cricket World Cup REUTERS/Andrew Boyers/ file photo

SYDNEY (Reuters) - David Warner will play his final bilateral international cricket series against New Zealand this week but the Australia opener is not expecting an affectionate farewell from Black Caps fans in Wellington and Auckland.

The 37-year-old has already retired from test and one-day cricket but has delayed his farewell from the shortest format of the game until after the World Cup in the Caribbean and United States in June.

Warner, who will open for Australia in Wednesday's Twenty20 series opener against New Zealand at Wellington Stadium and the two matches that follow at Eden Park, said he would not let any abuse affect his game. "Over here, it's always the harsh reality that we're neighbours, in sport we like to beat each other," Warner told reporters in the New Zealand capital on Monday.

"From that perspective, we're going to be expecting the crowd to come at us as hard as they come. As we always say, it's in one ear, out the other – if I actually hear anything."

Warner described local fans as "derogatory and pretty vulgar" after the Australians were targeted for abuse during a test and ODI tour of New Zealand in 2016.

"I enjoy playing here," Warner added. "It's about coming out and trying to put my best foot forward, and score runs.

"The crowd, yeah, they got personal, but if they have to get personal, that’s their character ... if you want to pay your money to come and abuse people, you have to go back and lay in your own bed.

"We're here to play the game of cricket that we love, enjoy and put bums on seats to keep the game going."

Warner said he was going to continue his career in Twenty20 franchise leagues around the world for "another couple of years" .

Despite having also signed up to offer his opinions on the game through media work, Warner said he was not considering a career in politics.

"Yeah, look, I'll leave that for another time," he said.

"I think I'd get absolutely grilled if I was to go into politics."

(Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Peter Rutherford)

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