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Old hand Warner ready for third Test

AAP logoAAP 22/11/2016 Rob Forsaith

David Warner has been called many things in his life but now wears the tag of Australian cricket's elder statesman with pride.

National selectors overhauled the Test XI after Australia's fifth straight loss in the format, making wholesale changes to the batting order in response to woeful collapses in Perth and Hobart.

Warner, who turned 30 last month, is the oldest member of the team that will face South Africa in the third Test that starts in Adelaide on Thursday.

The vice-captain, who has played 56 Tests, is also the most experienced player in Steve Smith's side with the exception of offspinner Nathan Lyon.

Matt Renshaw will make his Test debut at age 20 and become Warner's third opening partner in the three-match series.

It is representative of the turbulence that has left Australia facing the prospect of their first whitewash in a home Test series. It also highlights the team's recent reliance on Warner and Smith for the bulk of their runs.

"It happens, you get older," Warner quipped on Tuesday, when asked about officially becoming Australia's old hand.

"It's a good thing as well. Good signs that I've matured over the years and I've been able to keep my spot.

"Now it's about me trying to filter down my experience to the youngsters in the team and making sure they're on the right path that Steve wants us to be on."

Renshaw, who has played just 12 first-class games, is so raw he needed to introduce himself to many teammates after landing in Adelaide.

Warner has leaned on Burns to learn more about the Middlesbrough-born batsman.

"I don't know a lot about him. I've heard a few whispers and whispers through Joe Burns, who called me and spoke about him," he said.

"He's a great competitor. They said he likes batting in the contest and batting time, which is fantastic. It's what we like."

Warner admitted it would take time to learn Renshaw's strengths and weaknesses.

"I'll sit down and have a word with him and see what areas of his game he ... when he's on the back foot a little bit, how he can rotate the strike," he said.

"It's about trying to work out what his gameplan is ... it's about batting in partnerships.

"Trying to get to know each individual and how they get off strike and their go to if they're getting worked over by a bowler."

Warner declared himself a certain starter for the day-night Test, having recovered from a blow to the groin.

Warner misread a delivery from Josh Hazlewood in the nets on Monday and was struck on the box.

"It was extremely painful for a few hours ... I actually felt sick in the guts," Warner said.

"It's been a while since I've been hit flush.

"I'll be OK. I'm just lucky the box split and didn't grab anything. A few boys in the past have had that happen and it's quite nasty."

Meanwhile, the pugnacious opened lamented "quite a lazy shot" that led to his first-innings dismissal in Hobart but added there was no point dwelling on it.

PHILLIP HUGHES (4 innings, average partnership of 23.25 runs) ED COWAN (28 innings, average partnership of 44.86 runs) GLENN MAXWELL (1 innings, average partnership of 15 runs) CHRIS ROGERS (41 innings, average partnership of 51.32 runs) SHANE WATSON (1 innings, average partnership of 34 runs) SHAUN MARSH (8 innings, average partnership of 60 runs) JOE BURNS (19 innings, average partnership of 44.32 runs)

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