Ashes outcast back in selection frame after stunning ton in South Africa.
David Warner said being dropped from the Australian side was the best thing that could have happened to him.
The stunning admission comes after the powerful left-handed batsman blasted 193 for Australia A, after being exiled to the team for his part in a fight with Joe Root.
The punch-up in a pub in Birmingham was seen as the last straw and Warner was dropped from the team on the eve of the Ashes series against England.
Warner said being dumped was the wake-up call he needed to get his career back on track after a spate of off-field incidents had tarnished his reputation.
“Sitting on the sidelines and copping that punishment and not being selected, it was a thing that I needed. I definitely needed a kick up the bum,” Warner said.
“It was my own fault the incident that happened.”
Despite his rap-sheet, Warner’s innings in Pretoria should see his name mentioned by coach Darren Lehmann as a possible inclusion for the third Test starting on August 1 at Old Trafford.
Phil Hughes and Steve Smith will be under the most pressure to score runs in Australia’s three-day warm-up game against Sussex.
Warner will likely slot back into the side at number six, not his usual opener spot, under a move that was designed by the Australian camp pre-Ashes tour.
After scoring just 17 runs against a Zimbabwe XI, Warner said he just wanted to spend time at the crease against South Africa A, a trait that has been greatly lacking from his Australian teammates in England.
“I set myself a goal of wanting to bat three hours out there,” he said.
“I batted an hour in Zimbabwe and I decided here I’d just come in and be positive from the start and when the ball was there to hit, I hit it. That’s how I played today and it came off.
“I hadn’t really played for about 40 days so with no cricket under my belt I was fortunate enough to be sent here and get some game time in.
“I know I would have had to wait until after the first two Tests to get any game time over there otherwise.”