Not only is David Warner intent on captaining Australia at every opportunity, the opening batsman has also flagged the possibility of a career in politics once he retires.
Warner has been known to interact a little more often with political leaders than most members of the Australian side, famously fronting then Prime Minister Tony Abbott to commit federal government funding for the redevelopment of Heffron Park, near his childhood home in public housing in Matraville.
Now, following his influential public role in the 2017 pay dispute between Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers Association, Warner has said he is interested in looking towards making a difference in politics following his playing days.
“After cricket, I wouldn’t mind doing something,” Warner told The Final Word podcast. “One thing that has been embedded in me since a young age is that I grew up in a housing commission. As a kid, I had to do everything at home with my brother just because my parents worked all the time. So whether it was dishes, ironing – all the normal things you do at home. Once I was able to go and work, I went and worked because we needed that money coming in to pay the bills. Me and my brother both paid a bit of rent when we were younger and I just liked looking out for anyone who was close to me.
“During the dispute, it was a tough situation, you had your employers who were going up against our union and the players. So, I thought I needed to have a stance somewhere because at the end of the day, I want to play cricket for my country but for us to get a result or something in the middle – a happy medium – we had to fight for that. I am a believer in what I believe in. So, that was our belief, to get what we wanted. I sit back now and go, ‘I probably regret how the situation was played out in the media.’ And we do as players.
“But, if you believe in something you are going to have to fight for it and I wasn’t going to stand down because we needed someone out there to speak about it. You can sit back and do what you like but you don’t get anywhere unless someone speaks up and does something.”
Warner’s brand of cricketing leadership was on display during the recent T20 triangular series won by Australia over New Zealand and England. He said that his desire to lead the national team wherever possible would fuel him to take part in every T20 series when the full-time captain, Steven Smith, is rested.
“I just like having responsibility and if there is anything that I can do to help anyone, whether it is here at the cricket or even if it is down at the beach or something,” Warner said. “If it is something that I can help with and someone needs help, then it is something I’ll be hand up for. That’s just the person that I am. And obviously standing in for Steve there are big shoes to fill. He needs his rest.
“Playing all three forms for Steve is like playing six or seven different forms with having the responsibility of being captain of all three forms. So, he definitely needs his break from time to time and I am obviously going to put my hand up as a senior player to do that role.
“I feel it is important we do have a senior player playing in all three formats, or one of us staying back and playing the T20 format, because you need to keep your core team values and how we are as an Australian unit. You need to have that experience there too for the guys who are coming through.”