David WarnerSYDNEY – David Warner and Ed Cowan arrived in Test cricket from different walks of life, but the Australian openers both learnt their trade at the same junior cricket club.
Just like Test opening bowlers Peter Siddle and James Pattinson came through Dandenong in Victoria, the No.1 and 2 bats Warner and Cowan, are products of Eastern Suburbs in Sydney.
The pair never played together as kids, with Cowan being four years older and moving on to the Sydney Uni club in his later teens, but their dreams of wearing the baggy green both started in Waverley Oval territory.
In many ways, Warner, from a housing commission estate in Matraville, and Cowan, a graduate of the elite Cranbrook private school, couldn’t be more different.
Cowan is a student of the game and has already written his own book, while Warner is arguably the world’s premier Twenty20 batsman and a pioneer of that style of batting in Test cricket.
But despite their individuality, the two left-handers share a common cricketing grounding at least, as they aim to get their fledgling opening partnership into gear after patchy starts against India in Melbourne and Sydney.
Bob Horsell was the president at Eastern Suburbs for more than 19 years and watched closely as Cowan and then Warner mastered their contrasting styles to the point where they were selected to wear the baggy green.
Horsell said it was an amazing circumstance that two local clubs were responsible for four of the current Australian XI and backed Cowan and Warner to eventually click as a combination.
“Ed Cowan’s a very switched on young man, very intelligent, very smart, and David has improved out of sight from a crazy beginning with the Twenty20 poster boy stuff to being a member of all three forms of the game,” Horsell said.
“It’s an incredible achievement by both players. “Their backgrounds are obviously extraordinarily different.
“It’s just something unheard of for us in our history, when you think the previous home-grown player (to play for Australia) was Bruce Francis (1972). And before that, I think you’d have to go back before World War I.”
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