Australia’s 33-year-old batsman Matthew Wade has been dropped from Australia’s Test squad for the tour of South Africa after his ‘not so good’ series against India. Wade has been replaced by Alex Carey, who received his maiden Test call-up.
Wade was criticised for throwing his wicket away during the Tests against India and his approach drew a lot of criticism from the netizens and experts.
Wade, who scored 173 runs at an average of 21.62 in four Tests against India, has been included in the T20I squad that will play five T20Is on the tour of New Zealand. Apart from Carey, the Test squad also comprises of uncapped players in the form of Mark Steketee, Sean Abbott, Mitchell Swepson and Michael Neser.
“When presented with the challenging task of selecting two concurrent Australian men’s squads for overseas tours, we picked our first-choice Test squad given the importance of the proposed series against South Africa,” Trevor Hohns, head of Australia selection committee, said on Wednesday.
“The squad is quite similar to that selected for the final two Tests of the recently-completed Border-Gavaskar series, with the exception of Matt Wade, who will join the Australian men’s T20I squad in New Zealand, and the addition of Alex Carey, who has been in strong form with both bat and gloves,” he added.
Ben Oliver, Cricket Australia’s general manager for national teams, said Paine’s record as the captain had been very good since he took over in 2018 in the wake of the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa that led to suspensions for then skipper Steve Smith and vice-captain David Warner.
“Tim Paine has been an outstanding captain since taking over the Australian men’s Test team in incredibly difficult circumstances,” Oliver said.
“Tim has the support of the team, the coach and everyone else at Cricket Australia and the result of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy series has done nothing to diminish that.
“Tim is in career-best form with the bat and, while the series against India was not his best with the gloves by his own admission, he remains in the top echelon of wicketkeepers globally. And as a leader, he has been brilliant. To captain a squad through the many challenges presented by the pandemic – not least the unique pressures of hub life – is no easy task and Tim did that with strength, humility and good humour. After a series that attracted so much global interest, it was inevitable there’d be scrutiny. But some of the commentary surrounding Tim and his position as Test captain has been wide of the mark,” he added.
Travis Head, who was dropped from the starting XI for the series-deciding test loss to India in Brisbane earlier this month, was preferred as a middle-order batsman to Wade.
Aaron Finch will lead the T20 squad for the five-game series in a squad that also includes emerging spinner Tanveer Sanga, the return of Jhye Richardson and the inclusion of short-form regulars Glenn Maxwell, Adam Zampa and Marcus Stoinis.
Tim Paine (captain), Pat Cummins (vice-captain), Sean Abbott, Alex Carey, Cameron Green, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Moises Henriques, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Will Pucovski, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mark Steketee, Mitchell Swepson, David Warner.
Aaron Finch (captain), Matthew Wade (vice-captain), Ashton Agar, Jason Behrendorff, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Ben McDermott, Riley Meredith, Josh Philippe, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, Daniel Sams, Tanveer Sangha, D’Arcy Short, Marcus Stoinis, Ashton Turner, Andrew Tye, Adam Zampa.