London: A contrite David Warner has broken his silence on the shock return home of Jonathan Trott, saying Saturday he had no idea the England batsman was suffering a stress illness.
Trott`s departure from the Ashes series, coming in the wake of Australia`s 381-run win in the first Gabba Test, stunned the cricket world, not least Warner, reports said.
The Australian opener had criticised Trott`s second-innings dismissal to Mitchell Johnson in Brisbane as "pretty poor and weak" after himself posting a hundred on day three of the match.
When Trott subsequently flew home with a "stress-related illness", the media focus turned back on to Warner.
He has maintained a silence since then but told Fairfax Media his thoughts were with Trott, who is back in England and taking an indefinite break from cricket.
"We didn`t know anything about an illness or what not," Warner said.
"It`s sad to see anyone go through that tough period and obviously if he`s got an illness that`s there, we hope he gets the right people to help him out.
"We know the world-class kind of batter he is: he averages 50 in Test cricket and he has been a great player, a rock for England.
"I wish him all the best and I know our team wishes him all the best. I hope he gets well soon and (is back) playing the best cricket he can."
England officials said at the time when they revealed Trott`s condition that Warner`s remarks had no impact on the batsman leaving the tour prematurely.
But Fairfax Media said England coach Andy Flower hit back at Warner while answering questions from the touring press about Trott`s exit from the tour and his top-order batsman`s predicament.
While he said Warner`s comments were not responsible for Trott`s decision to fly home, Flower had said the opener had been disrespectful in knocking another cricketer via the media.
"I think, on this occasion, he has got that horribly wrong," he said.
Warner is keen to back up his Gabba century, the fourth of his 23-Test career and the first in 12 months, with another strong showing in Adelaide, knowing he is likely to be a target for England and their fans after the acrimonious events in Brisbane.
"I was always going to cop criticism no matter what from what I said," Warner told Fairfax Media.
"As I said before, I probably stepped over that line and at the end of the day it`s cricket. We`ve got to go out there and play the best we can and as hard as we can without crossing that line."