Hyderabad: There were concerns over whether Matthew Wade would make it to Australia’s final XI in the second Test after sustaining a fractured cheekbone on the match eve.
Wade, scoring a vital 62 on the first day and stitching a 145-run stand with captain Michael Clarke, simply brushed aside all concerns saying that he decided to play once there wasn’t any swelling.
“I just needed to check if my left-eye closed over… So when I woke up this morning and looked in the mirror, I could see that I wasn’t having any problem as such. Therefore I decided to go on and play,” Wade clarified at the media conference, at the end of the day’s proceedings.
Despite his fine knock, Wade was extremely disappointed with how the batting collapsed, as Australia lost five wickets for just 28 runs after cruising at 208 for four.
“I felt I was in control today... I felt my plans against both spinners and pacers came off pretty well. But it was very disappointing to be dismissed, especially at that period of the game when Michael and myself had built a good platform.
“We lost just too many wickets in that last session. It was satisfying having been able to execute what I’m working on in the nets. In the end, though, it was disappointing that we couldn’t kick on and put up a big total,” the wicketkeeper said.
Talking about Australia’s declaration, Wade explained that the idea was to make use of the variable bounce in the pitch and send back a couple of Indian batsmen by the end of play if possible.
“With the ball being a bit harder, there could probably be a little more up-and-down bounce in the first hour tomorrow. That’s the reason why we declared. The message was clear – try and get a couple of wickets. We felt that if we could get the ball in the right area, it might stay low or even bounce awkwardly. And in the process, we can get a couple of wickets today in the form of a leg-before or bowled.
“That didn’t happen... But we’re confident that if we keep on attacking the stumps, we are going to create enough chances,” he elaborated.
Wade also emphasised on the important role that tweakers Xavier Doherty and debutant Glenn Maxwell —coming in place of Nathan Lyon and Mitchell Starc respectively — are supposed to play alongside pacers James Pattinson and Peter Siddle.
Although India hold the upper hand considering the present circumstances, the southpaw remains hopeful of Australia taking a first-innings lead.
“You never know... These wickets are so different than what we’re used to playing on. I believe that if we bowl well enough, we can definitely restrict India to under 230.”
Wade also lauded the efforts of the Indian pacemen, especially Bhuvneshwar Kumar, who rocked the Aussie top order by extracting movement off the pitch.
“India’s quicks got early wickets and challenged us with every ball, getting it to reverse. They will play a handy role throughout this Test,” he said.
Wade stressed on the importance of playing the sweep shot in this part of the world. “In certain conditions, especially when there’s a lot of spin, sweep is necessary. It’s about assessing when we should play it. England did it here and scored a lot of runs,” he said.