Sydney: Australian selectors would name a replacement for Shane Warne on Wednesday after the champion leg spinner tested positive for a banned substance and headed back home just three days into the World Cup tournament. Chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns said in Brisbane the selection panel will meet later in the evening on Tuesday to consider a replacement for Warne who is flying back without playing in even a single World Cup match.
Hohns said the replacement needed to be sent across to South Africa at the earliest. Defending champions Australia, which opened its campaign with a match against Pakistan on Tuesday, take on India in its second Pool 'A' match on Saturday. The selectors have an unexpected problem at hand as Stuart MacGill, who has in the past taken place of Warne, was not named in the 30-member probables list for the World Cup. They will now have to choose from the inexperienced trio of off spinner Nathan Hauritz, leggie Cameron White and left-arm spinner Mark Higgs.
But it was still not clear whether the International Cricket Council (ICC) will agree to a replacement for Warne who faces an Australian Cricket Board (ACB) drugs tribunal. ACB has reportedly asked ICC to consider allowing Warne to play in the World Cup if his second sample tests negative and it is proved that no offence was committed. The 33-year-old Warne had stated before the start of the World Cup that it would be his last outing in cricket's mega show.