George Bailey, Australian batsman, has praised the leadership of interim One-day international captain David Warner after his side’s two-wicket victory against Sri Lanka in Dambulla on Sunday (August 28).
Warner has taken the reins for the remainder of the series after skipper Steve Smith controversially went home after the second ODI for rest and recuperation ahead of a busy Australian summer. The 29-year- old had never captained Australia previously but had received acclaim as a highly-respected leader for Sunrisers Hyderabad in the Indian Premier League.
After leading Australia to a decisive 2-1 series lead, Warner injected his innate characteristics of boundless energy, positivity and confidence into the team. Bailey, who was named man-of-the-match after scoring 70, was effusive of Warner’s leadership.
“I think he’s a natural leader,” Bailey said of Warner in the aftermath of the third ODI. “He’s always been a leader in terms of the way he plays the game and a lot of the things we talk about as a team.
“And Boof (coach Darren Lehmann) has always talked about, driving the game and playing the game aggressively, taking the game on.”
Bailey, who has captained Australia in ODIs and Twenty20 Internationals previously, said Warner was an innate captain. “The conversations that I was privy to when he was talking to the bowlers (on Sunday), he was really clear and direct,” he said.
“He keeps things simple and they’re all pretty good things to have as a skipper. I think it suits him.”
Warner was also an inclusive leader relying on the senior members of the team, according to Bailey. “Wadey (Matthew Wade), Finchy (Aaron Finch), myself, SoS (Shaun Marsh) and all of the quicks have now played enough games where they know what they want,” he said. “We’ll keep giving him as many options as we can and he can discard them as he sees fit.
“I know that the times I’ve captained, I’d much rather have too many ideas coming at me and I can get rid of the ones I don’t need than when no one is coming up at all,” he added.
“I don’t think we’ll come out with anything too radical (under Warner’s leadership), it was more just letting Bull (Warner) talk through what his plans were, and they were pretty much always on the money.”