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David Warner

Warner wants focus to be on T20 World Cup as he seeks to erase past memories in South Africa

Australia news

Australia batsman David Warner does not expect a repeat of the theatrics that underlined their previous tour of South Africa, in 2018, as he believes a limited-overs tour, comprising three T20Is and three ODIs isn’t long enough to stoke past tensions.

Australia’s four-Test tour of South Africa in 2018 was marred by controversy. While the ball-tampering scandal that resulted in year-long bans for Warner and then national team captain Steve Smith, and a nine-month ban for fellow offender Cameron Bancroft, dominated the headlines, Warner and Quinton de Kock were involved in a tense exchange during the series opener in Kingsmead.

However, Warner assured that Australia’s sole focus this time around would be on making use of the tour to prepare further for the upcoming ICC Men’s T20 World Cup at home in October. "It's one-day cricket and Twenty20 cricket, and you don't really have much time over the short period of time to get underneath each other's skin or anything like that," Warner said. "And you don't go out there to do that. For us, our focus is moving forward and trying to get the wins on the board and send a message to everyone that the World Cup is in our backyard and we want to be a team to be beaten."

Warner was also pleased with the welcome he received in South Africa and had nothing but nice things to say about his time in the country so far. "Obviously, echoing Steve's words yesterday, about walking into first the airport and then walking into here, obviously the memories weren't great," he said. "But the last few days, every single person that we've come across that's asked for a photo, or that we've come into contact with or spoken to, have had nothing but great words to say and welcoming us to the country and being really, really polite.

"It's been incredible how much support we've had from people in the public. I just played golf and they went over and above to make us feel more welcome. It's actually a great feeling."

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