Opener Joe Burns has been dropped by Australia for the third and fourth Tests against India with David Warner recalled as he edges closer to full fitness following a groin injury.

Warner is likely to play at the Sydney Cricket Ground after missing the opening two matches in the series that is now tied at 1-1 following the tourists' impressive victory in Melbourne.

Burns was the man to miss out after registering scores of 8, 51 not out, 0 and 4 in the opening two Tests.

"Joe Burns has been released from the squad and will return to the Brisbane Heat," said chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns.

"Unfortunately, Joe's returns haven't been what he or the selectors would like or what we consider he is capable of.

"David has made strong progress in his recovery from injury and will be given every chance to play in Sydney with another seven days until the match."

There may be another change to the batting line-up with Will Pucovski also included in the squad.

The 22-year-old was due to play in the series opener in Adelaide before suffering another concussion, the ninth of his career. Pucovski's versatility means he could bat anywhere in the top six.

Hohns added: "Will is in the final stages of the graduated return to play protocols and has been symptom free for some time.

"He will be fit to play in Sydney subject to completing the return to play protocols and an independent assessment."

Paceman Sean Abbott was also included after overcoming a calf problem.


The Australia squad for the third and fourth Tests against India is: 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

Australia batsman Joe Burns was thankful for Justin Langer's support and backing amid his form slump.

Burns was picked for the first Test against India despite being in dismal form, and the opener repaid the selectors' faith with an unbeaten half-century in the second innings of the eight-wicket victory.

Before that unbeaten 51, Burns had made just 70 runs in his previous 10 innings.

The 31-year-old said it was special knowing he still had the support of head coach Langer despite his struggles.

"Obviously, JL has been right in my corner over the last few weeks. Working closely with him in the days leading up to the first Test match, that's exactly how we wanted to approach the game," Burns told a news conference on Monday.

"More than anything in the preparation he wanted me to really play my shots in training and be strong minded in our approach. It's always a special feeling when you're not making runs and you have someone in your corner, then to go out and get some on the board.

"In terms of going forward now, every Test match I play I just want to make big hundreds and try to win games of cricket for Australia. That doesn't change. If I made a pair last game, it wouldn't change going into the next match.

"I can see how people make assumptions of how you may be thinking, but at the end of the day, this game at this level is too challenging to even contemplate or think about those sorts of things. For me anyway, I find the game pretty challenging as is."

With David Warner (adductor) and Will Pucovski (concussion) out, Burns opened alongside Matthew Wade in the first Test.

Warner is seemingly the more likely of the injured pair to return for the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne, but Burns also praised Wade, who made 33 in the second innings.

"I think Wade's role can't be understated. He came out in that fourth innings and those run chases can be tricky, especially when you see a team get bundled out for 30-odd," Burns said.

"We knew that they had to be aggressive and Wadey is such a tenacious player and he's got so much experience and knowhow. I just loved his intent, the fact that he kept the momentum rolling straight into our innings and didn't let them get on top at any stage. Very unfortunate the way he got dismissed, but he did a fantastic job.

"We haven't heard any final ideas about injuries and what not. I think we'll find out more over the coming days. Obviously, we're still in Adelaide at the moment, I think Dave is in Melbourne at the moment as well. We're still soaking up this Test match here."

Australia ran riot as they claimed a crushing eight-wicket first-Test victory over India, who set an unwanted record in a stunning display at Adelaide Oval.

Joe Burns and Australia chased down the 90-run target with ease on Saturday after India were humiliated for their lowest ever Test score of 36 following a jaw-dropping collapse in the day-night showdown on Saturday.

Virat Kohli's India resumed on 9-1 on day three of the Adelaide Test, but the visitors sensationally capitulated as Australia's merciless pace attack produced a relentless showing with the pink ball.

Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins were the chief destroyers – the star pair finished 5-8 and 4-21 respectively.

Hazlewood – whose figures represented the most economical five-for by an Australia player in 73 years – celebrated his 200th Test wicket, while Cummins brought up his 150th dismissal to become the equal-third quickest Australian to reach the figure in terms of innings bowled (59).

India remarkably crumbled in just 15.2 overs to record their lowest Test score after Mohammed Shami retired hurt (one), the tourists' total lower than the country's previous record of 42 against England in 1974.

None of India's batsmen reached double figures – Mayank Agarwal the top scorer with nine, while captain Kohli was sent packing by Cummins for just four in a jaw-dropping display. It was the first time ever not a single player in the top six of a Test side reached double digits.

It was also the joint fifth-lowest Test score – behind New Zealand's all-time record of 26 set in 1955, while it is the joint-lowest team total in the format on Australian soil after South Africa's performance against Australia in 1932.

Australia made light work of the score put forward by India, only dropping two wickets to clinch the first of four Test matches against India.

Joe Burns – under pressure heading into the opener due to his poor form – stepped up with an unbeaten half-century from 63 deliveries to lead the Australians to victory after hitting a six to bring up his fifty and the team's win.

Matthew Wade was run out by Wriddhiman Saha for 33, while Marnus Labuschagne (six) was caught by Agarwal after skying a Ravichandran Ashwin (1-16) delivery, but it mattered little.

Tim Paine does not believe Joe Burns is lacking confidence amid reports the out-of-form opener will keep his Australia place against India.

Burns, 31, has been in dreadful form since the Sheffield Shield season started in October.

The right-hander scored 57 runs in five innings for Queensland before making five runs in four innings for Australia A in tour matches against India.

But with David Warner (adductor) and Will Pucovski (concussion) unavailable, Burns will reportedly play in the first Test starting in Adelaide on Thursday, with Matthew Wade to join him in opening.

Australia captain Paine backed Burns, who averages 38.3 in 21 Tests.

"Speaking to Joe, I don't think he is [lacking confidence], he's been looking forward to this Test match. Obviously, his build up in terms of runs hasn't been great," he told a news conference.

"But again, if you look at the work he's done solely in Test cricket for this team, it's been very good. He averages just over 40 I think in Test cricket. 

"If Joe walks out to bat tomorrow, we've got full confidence in him doing the job, there's no doubt about that. Obviously, there's always going to be a lot of noise externally about the first Test and what team we're picking. Internally we've been pretty clear for a while. 

"Things have changed a little bit with injury but as I said, I think tomorrow you'll see a pretty similar side walk out that finished the summer last year here in Australia."

Wade will reportedly open alongside Burns, and it would mark the first time he has done so in Test cricket.

Paine said Australia had plenty of options, including Wade – whose Test average if 31.3 in 32 matches.

"He [Wade] is certainly an option to open the batting, no doubt about that," Paine said. 

"I think we've got a number of guys who are willing to open the batting, but with 'Wadey' in particular, I think we saw last year against New Zealand in that short-ball stuff he's willing to put his body on the line for the team. 

"We know he's as tough as nails and we know he'll do a job no matter where he bats for us. Obviously, we have got a scenario where we could have a different opener.

"As I said, we've had a number of guys in this group put their hand up if that's the best thing for the team, which is a great thing for us as a side." 

Joe Burns' poor run of form continued during Australia A's tour match against India on Sunday.

The opener, whose place for the first Test is under threat, fell for just one in the second innings, trapped lbw by Mohammed Shami in Sydney.

Burns has been in poor form ahead of the series opener beginning in Adelaide on Thursday.

The right-hander fell for a duck in the first innings, while he made scores of four and 0 in the previous tour match.

It comes after Burns scored just 57 runs in five Sheffield Shield innings for Queensland to begin the season.

His form comes at a time when Australia are dealing with injuries to top-order batsmen, with David Warner (adductor) and Will Pucovski (concussion) already ruled out of the first Test.

Burns' combination with Warner had been talked up before the explosive left-hander suffered his injury.

In 27 Test innings, Burns and Warner have scored 1,365 runs at an average of 50.55, including averaging 65.4 against Pakistan and New Zealand in 2019-20.

Marcus Harris, who like Pucovski was in good form to begin the Shield season, made scores of 26 and five, having departed for 35 and finished with 25 not out in the first tour game.

The top-order woes have led to suggestions Shaun Marsh, 37, could return, with only Pucovski (495) having scored more Sheffield Shield runs than his 485 this season.

But frmer Australia wicketkeeper Ian Healy hopes Australia look elsewhere.

"I hope not. Not because it's Shaun, but because we've got heaps of players that have performed in those Shield games and you don't have to go back to a 37-year-old player," he told SEN.

"I want to see him play Shield cricket for as long as he wants and help a lot of blokes, but we're better than having to go back to Shaun I reckon."

Will Pucovski and Joe Burns both fell cheaply in Australia A's tour game against India.

The duo are eyeing a place in the first Test against India starting in Adelaide on December 17, although both may yet be needed with David Warner sidelined due to a groin injury.

But neither Pucovski nor Burns staked their claims on day two of the tour match against India in Sydney.

Pucovski fell for one after being caught by Shubman Gill following a loose shot off Umesh Yadav.

Burns was gone for four, edging through to Wriddhiman Saha after attempting to leave a Yadav delivery.

The dismissals left Australia A at 5-2 in response to India's 247-9 declared.

It continued a difficult run of form for Burns, who has scored just 57 runs in five Sheffield Shield innings this season.

Pucovski has been pushing for his place with 495 runs at an average of 247.5 to begin the Shield campaign.

However, the stability of Burns' opening partnership with Warner has been talked about, although there is uncertainty over the left-hander's fitness.

In 27 Test innings, Burns and Warner have scored 1,365 runs at an average of 50.55, including averaging 65.4 against Pakistan and New Zealand in 2019-20.

David Warner insisted he would be happy with whoever he opens with for Australia, but the left-hander talked up his partnership with Joe Burns.

Burns is under pressure ahead of the first Test against India, with Will Pucovski starring for Victoria to begin the Sheffield Shield season.

In 27 Test innings, Burns and Warner have scored 1,365 runs at an average of 50.55, including averaging 65.4 against Pakistan and New Zealand in 2019-20.

Warner is happy with the stability of Burns, but said Pucovski – who has scored 495 runs at an average of 247.5 to begin the Shield campaign – was in fine form.

"To be honest, I've had over a dozen opening partners and it's never been quite stable," he told a news conference on Monday.

"Obviously, when I was batting with 'Bucky' [Chris] Rogers, we had a great partnership and we bonded really well together out in the middle. I think something with me and Joe, we've done that over the past few years.

"I've known Joe for a long time. We've played out in the middle together, we know each other's game very well but, at the end of the day, it's upon the selectors to pick the right person to fit that position.

"If they go the way of Will, he is obviously batting fantastic. He has been in and out of the Test squad and, obviously, removed himself in some sad times, obviously, with his mental stuff.

"He is in the right frame of mind at the moment. It probably is an opportunity for him to come into the team but, as we know, it's harder to get out of this team than get in. Whoever they go with, I will be well and truly happy with as long as that person who comes in does their job.

"At the moment, I didn't think Joe did anything wrong last summer. We put on some great partnerships, averaged over 60 and that's what you want from your opening partnership so at the end of the day, it's upon the selectors to pick their team and I've got to be happy with that and just embrace it."

As Pucovski has starred, Burns has scored just 57 runs in his five Sheffield Shield innings.

Warner said he saw no reason to change a partnership that has worked with Burns, who averages 38.3 in Tests.

"It's not a thing where the coach and selectors will come to me and ask me. It's just a preference," Warner said.

"I have batted time with Joe Burns before in the middle. I know exactly what we are about when we're out there, building a partnership and building a bond.

"We won a lot of games last year. For me you don't really break something that's actually working, it's usually the opposite. When things aren't going your way, you've got to find problems and solutions, that's the only thing I can sort of back that answer up with.

"To get into the Australian team, you've got to put numbers on the board and Will's an exceptional talent and a great player for years to come especially, he's in the right mind frame at the moment. This next sort of [Australia] A game is probably going to be the tell all, it could be the bat off for that position so it's going to be interesting to see and obviously it's up to the selectors to pick the team at the end of the day, not me."

The first Test between Australia and India is set to begin in Adelaide on December 17.

Australia coach Justin Langer suggested Joe Burns would keep his spot ahead of Will Pucovski for the first Test against India.

Pucovski, 22, was named in a 17-man Test squad on Thursday, piling the pressure on Burns after scoring 495 runs at an average of 247.5 to begin the Sheffield Shield season.

Burns, meanwhile, has struggled, making just 57 runs in five innings to be in danger of losing his place for the first Test starting in Adelaide on December 17.

While Langer was full of praise for Pucovski, he is prepared to stick with what has helped Australia reach the top of the Test rankings.

Warner and Burns' partnerships have yielded 1,365 runs at an average of 50.55 for Australia in Tests.

"[Pucovski has] been amazing hasn't he? And it's exactly what we are looking for, I've said it for a very long time that we want guys who are outside of the team to bang so hard you can't ignore them," Langer told reporters on Friday.

"The fact is he's been so good we can't ignore him, he's been brilliant.

"That said I've also been consistent with the messaging that last summer we loved the combination of Joe Burns and David Warner, they have a real synergy, so at this point I'd say that will remain the same.

"But what Will's doing, what Cameron Green has done, is making a real statement through sheer weight of runs and that's always been a strong foundation for the strength of Australian cricket."

Langer said he wanted Australia to have consistency in their line-up, and he is prepared to back the players who currently hold their spots.

"We went through a period where there was lots of ins and outs, and in my view, we should back the guys in there," he said.

"That can change, but it's a pretty strong philosophy to stick to."

Ross Taylor accepts Australia are in a dominant position after three days of the first Test, yet the New Zealand captain is hoping the Black Caps' spirit can save them in Perth.

Eleven wickets fell on day three as Australia - 167-6 at stumps in their second innings - took a 417-run lead to establish firm control of the day-night encounter.

The Black Caps began the day on 109-5, with Taylor unbeaten on 66, but they were all out for 166 before lunch.

Australia were then 131-1 second time around, but Tim Southee (4-63) and Neil Wagner (2-40) helped stage a fightback to leave the home side six wickets down, and Taylor believes New Zealand will take heart from their display in the final session.

"There's still a long way to go in this Test match, but I thought the fight that we showed as a team, especially in that last session, bodes well for the rest of the series," Taylor told reporters.

"We're a long way behind the game at the moment, but if we can show the fight that we've shown in the last series, I think it will give the team a lot of confidence coming over here."

Taylor went on to add: "Any time you're going to chase 350, 400 on a wearing wicket, it's going to be tough.

"But at the same time we'll see what Australia do tomorrow and hopefully we can take that [declaration] out of their hands and wrap it up.

"Throughout the last few years, the strength of this side is the fighting spirit. Regardless of what happens, we want to fight and fight right to the end.

"It's a strange game, cricket, and the way Australia bowled at us in the first innings - they bowled fantastically well. But it's a time for us to step up as a batting unit and show what we can do. Not only showing what we can do but getting our confidence up as well."

When New Zealand bat again, they will do so knowing Australia are a bowler light after it was confirmed Josh Hazlewood will not bowl for the remainder of the Test due to a hamstring injury.

That did not seem to bother Australia first time around, though, and opener Joe Burns is keen for the hosts not to give their opponents a chance of a recovery on day four.

"Good position to be in," Burns said. "Obviously it's still going to be tough, being a bowler down, but we're really happy with where we're at.

"A little bit disappointing to lose a few wickets tonight but in the grand scheme of the game, we're in a good position, in control of the game. Come out tomorrow, start well and keep driving it home."

Tim Paine hopes Australia continue with the tradition of playing their first home Test at the Gabba after a crushing victory over Pakistan at the venue - provided they get Virat Kohli's permission.

A fine century from the brilliant Babar Azam was not enough to prevent Pakistan slipping to an innings defeat on Sunday, the tourists bowled out for 335 in their second innings.

The result stretches Australia's unbeaten run at the venue to 31 Tests – the last visiting team to triumph in Brisbane was West Indies in 1988 – and puts them 1-0 up in the two-match series.

However, captain Paine is unsure if they will be starting at the Gabba again next year, cheekily suggesting the potential schedule for the four-Test series against India is yet to receive the approval of counterpart Kohli.

Asked if he would like to start against India at the same venue, the wicketkeeper replied: "We'll certainly try. We will have to run that by Virat, but we will get an answer from him at some stage, I'm sure.

"That’s where we like to start our summer, as has been the case for a long, long time.

"As I said, we will ask Virat and see if we can get his permission to play here – maybe even get a pink-ball Test if he's in a good mood. We will have to wait and see."

Paine added: "We like to start here against anyone. Having said that, it [the venue] doesn't win games of cricket. The reason we win games of cricket at the Gabba is because we outplay our opposition."

Australia certainly outplayed Pakistan, aided by a new-look top three all contributing big scores.

David Warner returned to form after a lean Ashes tour with 154, while opening partner Joe Burns fell narrowly short of reaching three figures, making 97 after being recalled to the top of the order.

There was also a maiden Test ton for number three Marnus Labuschagne, who was named man of the match for his 185 that helped the hosts post 580 all out in their solitary innings in the contest.

While refusing to get too carried away by the early success, Paine hopes Australia have now settled on their batting line-up in the longest format.

"We've known Burnsy is a quality opening batsman for some time, it's great to have him back in the side," he said. "He's got a great combination happening with David.

"Marnus was given some opportunities 18 months ago when some people thought he should not, but the selectors saw the talent he had, and he's taken the experience he got then from Test cricket, gone to England and got even better, come home and looks like he got better again.

"We're really happy with the top three in this game. One innings doesn't make a summer, but happy with the positive signs we saw."

Australia and Pakistan conclude the series with a day-night Test in Adelaide, which begins on Friday.

David Warner hit an unbeaten century as Australia piled on the pain for Pakistan on day two of the first Test in Brisbane.

Warner posted his 22nd Test ton and fourth against Pakistan in a star display at the Gabba, where his 151 not out led Australia to 312-1 – a lead of 72 runs.

Australia star Warner had not reached triple figures in the longest form of the game since the 2017 Boxing Day Test against England – a one-year suspension for his role in the ball-tampering scandal derailing the batsman.

But Warner – who only managed 95 runs during a forgettable Ashes series in England – ended his wait for a hundred in the final session of the day after 180 deliveries.

Joe Burns was the only batsman to fall on the second day as Australia dominated – the opener falling three runs shy of a century after trying to sweep Yasir Shah (1-101).

After Pakistan were dismissed for 240 on Thursday, Warner and Burns took to the crease in warm conditions against the tourists, and they showed their prowess atop the order.

Warner survived a life on 56, when 16-year-old debutant Naseem Shah (0-65) thought he had his first international wicket, but the teenager heartbreakingly overstepped for a no-ball and the Australian was called back.

He also came close to being run out on 93, but Warner managed to make it back to his crease by centimetres, before completing a memorable ton after tea.

Warner and Burns combined for 222 until the latter was sent back to the pavilion.

Marnus Labuschagne (55 not out) was also spared late in the day when Haris Sohail's delivery flew past Asad Shafiq, while Warner's stump was hit by Shaheen Afridi (0-44) but the bails did not fall – capping a long and forgettable day for Pakistan.

Joe Burns has returned to a 14-man Australia squad at the expense of Marcus Harris and Usman Khawaja for the two-Test series against Pakistan.

Queensland batsman Burns is expected to partner David Warner at the top of the order on his home surface when the series begins at the Gabba on November 21.

Burns, who was overlooked for the Ashes after battling post-viral fatigue, is back in the fold despite making 0 and 11 for Australia A in this week's tour match against Pakistan.

Cameron Bancroft compiled a defiant 49 in the first innings of that match and is set to compete with Burns for a recall.

National selector Trevor Hohns indicated Travis Head, one of two vice-captains, would likely regain his spot in the playing side.

The 25-year-old South Australian was dropped for the final Ashes Test, but Will Pucovski's withdrawal from consideration for mental health reasons left selectors with few genuine middle-order options.

"Travis has immense experience as a young leader for his state," Hohns said on Thursday.

"He's certainly been in the mix, [firstly] to play, and we also like the way he goes about his business when he's around the team and the leadership skills he has to offer."

Left-handers Harris and Khawaja will not be involved in Brisbane or in the second Test in Adelaide, which starts on November 29.

Uncapped seamer Michael Neser is one of five pace bowling options in the squad alongside Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Starc and James Pattinson.

Meanwhile, Steve Smith has been fined 25 per cent of his Sheffield Shield match fee after pleading guilty to the charge of showing dissent at an umpire's decision.

The world's top-ranked Test batsman showed visible frustration after being judged caught behind for 103 in the first innings of New South Wales' match against Western Australia.

 

Australia Test squad: Tim Paine (captain), Cameron Bancroft, Joe Burns, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner.

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