Cricket Australia are set to review David Warner’s leadership ban as part of a bid to entice him back to the Big Bash League, according to a report by News Corp.
Warner has been unable to take any leadership role in Australian cricket since 2018, following his key role in the infamous ‘Sandpapergate’ scandal in South Africa that saw him suspended for 12 months.
However, the Daily Telegraph report that the CA board will consider rescinding the ban at its next directors meeting in July.
It is believed the desire to see Warner play BBL cricket for the first time since its inaugural 2011-12 season would be a key reason for the backflip, with the competition enduring criticism in recent years for its lack of star power.
As arguably Australia’s finest ever T20 batsman, Warner would be a major coup for a BBL club even after he retires from international cricket, made even more important with the league set to face fierce competition by cashed-up overseas competitions in the same summer time frame.
BBL chief Alistar Dobson told News Corp that while Warner is clearly a prime target for the competition, no concrete plans have been made.
“I know we’d love to have Dave in the BBL and if there are other things that need to happen to make that possible, that’s for others to resolve,” Dobson said.
“I’m aware of some historical considerations that exist in whether David wants to play in the BBL or not, and it’s not really for me to comment on other than we’d love to have him if he wants to play.
“David has been such a champion of Australian cricket and he’s a player that we’d love to have in the BBL.
“We know he’s got great history with the Sydney Thunder and we’d love all the Australian players to be playing in the BBL if they’re available. If there’s a way that David could find his way onto a BBL list I think it would be huge.”
The upcoming BBL competition is set to be without a number of Australian stars including bowling trio Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood, as their schedules are managed following a hectic six months which includes a home T20 World Cup and Tests against the West Indies and South Africa.
With a mid-summer ODI series against the Proteas widely expected to be cancelled, Warner could be free to play in the BBL for the first time in a decade.
In his only prior matches, for the Sydney Thunder, he has scored 152 runs at an impressive average of 76, including hitting the competition’s first-ever century, against the Melbourne Stars.
Since then, the success of his international career has left him unable to feature in the competition ever since.