Ex-Test opener David Warner set for fresh council honour in Sydney

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David Warner divided opinion throughout his cricket career and that has continued in his retirement.

Warner, 37, retired from Test and one-day international cricket this past summer and will pull stumps on his Australian T20 career following this year’s World Cup.

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He is likely to continue playing domestic T20 cricket, but his playing days in national colours are numbered after a superb career as an explosive opening batsman.

He also courted plenty of controversy over nearly two decades in cricket, involved in a number of stoushes on and off the field, along with the sandpaper controversy some refuse to forgive or forget.

Now the fifth highest scoring batsman in Australia’s Test history is set for a lasting honour by his local government in a move that has once against polarised opinion.

Warner grew up in Matraville in eastern Sydney and the Randwick City Council initially planned to pay tribute to the batsman by naming the Heffron Park nets after him.

That was then replaced with the plan to name a new indoor cricket centre at Maroubra’s Snape Park after the combative cricketer.

The Randwick City Council announced the original plan in a post on Facebook.

“What better way to celebrate a Randwick City local legend,” the post read, along with a photo of Warner with arms raised playing Test cricket for Australia.

“We all know David Warner as the legendary Test cricketer, but did you know he is also a Matraville boy?

“After attending Matraville Public School and Randwick Boys High, David went on to become the fifth-highest run scorer in Australia’s Test history and holds the second-highest Australian individual score ever.

“He was a boy from Matraville who came through the Housing Commission system and did well.”

The post drew a wide range of comments, a great number of which referenced sandpaper.

The comments that avoided the infamous 2018 incident in South Africa provide a cross-section of how Warner was viewed during his Hall of Fame-calibre career.

“David Warner is a cheat and a thug. Surely there’s a more worthy cricketer,” was one blunt response.

“Surely David Warner is worthy of having something more than just cricket nets named after him. How about naming Snape Park Oval after him?” wrote another.

“Quality Australian. That never-die attitude, defy the odds and never quit. Best wishes for he and family,” wrote a third.

“Quiet frankly this is an insult, perhaps a grandstand or a cricket oval should be named after David Warner,” was another comment.

“The sook stand might be an apt name. The biggest sledger around and couldn’t handle it when he got it back,” suggested another.

Warner, who is heading into commentary in retirement, and his wife Candice are never too far from the headlines.

Candice Warner is competing in this year’s series of I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here! and viewed some of her thoughts on her husband’s career.

“He’s always had these people who’ve had a misconception of him,” she said.

“But when you actually get to know him, he’s the most kindest, generous person.

“I think he would have been better off playing in a different era.”

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