Insight is an immense strength to possess, yet it is usually realized only in hindsight. Recently-retired David Warner would agree with the same, as the swashbuckling opener recently opened up about the early days of his career and pointed out the one thing he wished he could have changed about himself.
The Australian great, who hung his boots up two weeks ago as Australia secured a dominant whitewash of Pakistan in their three-match Test series, stated that he regrets the raw aggression he possessed as a youngster breaking into the big ranks.
‘I would have changed early doors, I wouldn’t have been that ‘attack dog’,’ Warner revealed in conversation with Code Sports.
‘If IPL came around earlier, in my mind I found that the more I get to know people, the more I wouldn’t actually go at someone. And I felt like I was actually directed to be that person, to go out there and attack opposition players and get under their skin.
Warner attributed the mindset he nurtured as a youngster coming up the ranks in grade cricket as a possible reason behind his aggressive nature.
‘Yeah it made me play better because they came at me, but it wasn’t what I’ve always set out to do. I think just because that was me growing up and being attacked verbally, playing grade cricket, that’s all you knew growing up,’ stated Warner.
‘What you play around and what you play in teams with, if people are going against you, you just think it’s acceptable to do that.
‘So that was almost like the role that I was encouraged to take up. And that’s probably one thing that I reckon I would speak up and change in my career, definitely.’
The left-handed opening batter was known for his aggressive behaviour against opposition players before the Cape Town ball-tampering saga in 2018.
Earlier in January, Australian opener and Warner’s strike partner Usman Khawaja also claimed that the coaching staff instructed Warner to sledge opponents during the early stages of his Test career, with the Newlands sandpaper scandal prompting an overhaul of the team’s culture.
“When I came into the team, the way that I went about it on the field was to get in people’s faces, to upset them and to get them off their rhythm when they’re batting. I was moulded into being that person,” exclaimed Khawaja.
Warner finished his Test career with 8786 runs at an average of 44.59, including 26 centuries and 37 fifties. He is Australia’s fifth-leading run-scorer in Test history.