Warner back for final two Tests against India


Australia have dropped opener Joe Burns and recalled David Warner and uncapped batsman Will Pucovski for the final two Tests against India next month.

Burns made three single-figure scores in four innings in the first two Tests, as Australia won the series opener and India hit back to take the second.

Warner missed both matches with a groin injury while Pucovski, 22, was due to make his debut before suffering a concussion in a warm-up match.

The third Test begins on January 6.

Having not scored a domestic fifty this season, Burns was not expected to play in the first Test until the injuries to Warner and Pucovski.

The 31-year-old hit an unbeaten 51 in the second innings of the first Test but made scores of eight, nought and four in his other innings – as well as four, nought, nought and one in four warm-up innings.

If Australia hand highly rated Pucovski, who averages 247.5 in the Sheffield Shield this season, a debut, Matthew Wade is likely to move back into the middle order from his role as a makeshift opener.

Selector Trevor Hohns confirmed Pucovski “has been symptom-free for some time” after suffering a ninth concussion of his career – not all of them cricket-related – on December 8, but he must pass a further test before being cleared to play.

Fast-bowling all-rounder Sean Abbott has recovered from a calf strain and has also been recalled to the squad.

Australia squad: Tim Paine (c), Sean Abbott, Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Moises Henriques, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Will Pucovski, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade, David Warner (BBC Sport)

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