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Warner prevented from opening batting

AAP logoAAP 24/11/2016 Steve Larkin

David Warner has been prevented from opening the batting for Australia in what may be another outsmarting manoeuvre from South African captain Faf du Plessis.

Du Plessis was 118 not out when he suddenly declared the Proteas' first innings at 9-259 on Thursday's opening day of the third Test.

Warner had been off the field for more than two overs at the time of the declaration and was therefore precluded from batting.

Warner grimaced in pain when throwing a ball while on the field, suffering a possible elbow problem.

Whether du Plussis noted Warner's absence and cashed in wasn't immediately clear - but it wouldn't surprise given the South African has been a step ahead of Australia all series.

The move forced Australia to shuffle Usman Khawaja into the opening slot with Test debutant Matt Renshaw.

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