Cricket: David Warner sent to national reserve side to gain match practice

NOTTINGHAM (AFP) - Controversial Australia batsman David Warner was dropped from the Ashes squad in England to join the national reserve A team in Africa, Cricket Australia announced on Wednesday.

Warner was left out of the Australia side playing the first Ashes Test against England at Trent Bridge, after completing a ban imposed for punching England's Joe Root last month.

His suspension saw Warner miss both of Australia's warm-up matches and team chiefs have decided he should get match practice playing for the A side against a Zimbabwe XI and South Africa A.

However, national selector John Inverarity said Warner remained a member of the Ashes squad and he could return in time for the third of a five-match series at Old Trafford.