David Warner has been ruled out of India vs Australia 2nd Test in Melbourne as he is yet to fully recover from a groin strain. Warner picked up the injury during the second ODI against India last month following which he was ruled out of the remainder of the white-ball matches and subsequently from the series opening first Test in Adelaide as well.

The opener hoped he will recover in time for the second Test starting December 26 as he underwent an extensive rehabilitation programme. However, failure to attain full fitness means his wait has been extended at least till the third Test that starts next year.

Also ruled out from the second Test is fast bowler Sean Abbott who though has been declared fit but the biosecurity protocols mean he along with Warner cannot link up with the Australia Test squad to be available for the second match in time.

Abbott suffered a calf strain during the second tour match against India in Sydney following which he was ruled out from the first Test at the Adelaide Oval.

Both Warner and Abbott were flown to Melbourne on Saturday after fresh coronavirus cases were reported in Sydney where the duo was recovering from their injuries. Will Pucovski, who was earmarked for a Test debut thanks to his excellent form in Sheffield Shield, was already ruled out due to concussion he suffered while batting in the first tour match against India in Drummoyne.

Warner’s absence means that Australia will in all likeliness field the same playing XI that beat India by eight wickets to take 1-0 lead in the four-match series. The hosts will likely stick with the makeshift opening combo of Joe Burns and Matthew Wade – who opened for the first time during his first-class career in the Adelaide Test.

While the pair was separated cheaply in the first dig of the match, they added 70 runs in the second innings with Burns hitting an unbeaten 51 to return to form.