In defying West Australia’s bowlers to salvage a draw, Matthew Wade has dared the selectors to replace him in the Test side at their peril.
The Tasmanian skipper clawed and scrapped and scowled for 143 balls to ensure Tasmania drew a high-scoring clash with WA at Park 25 in Adelaide on Monday.
The calls to elevate emerging all-rounder Cameron Green to Test ranks are growing, especially as Green is back bowling — and took two Tasmanian wickets in his return to the bowling crease.
But the man who he would replace in the Test middle-order, Wade, isn’t going anywhere based on his 83 in the first innings and his gritty and unconquered 57 on Monday.
You can’t overlook mature expertise — Wade ticked past 8000 first-class runs on Monday – especially against Virat Kohli’s Indian tourists this summer.
“He’s hitting the ball beautifully,” Tasmanian opener Charlie Wakim said on Monday night.
“He’s moving well. He seems really confident in his plans and his game. I’d be surprised if he’s not playing in the first Test.”
The match was an attritional affair on a flat pitch but there was assistance for the quicks on Friday, when WA lurched to 5-64 under bowler-friendly skies. Thereafter the batsmen dominated.
“It’s a little bit of a grind, no doubt,” Wakim said. “But that’s the brand that you need to play. To take it deep and grind the other team out of it.
“(But) we had a bit of seam action on day one with some wind and some rain, so we felt right at home.”
The game was called off at 5.12 on Monday with Tasmania 2-117 after being set 307 runs to win in 61 overs.
It’s all over for our clash against @WACA_Cricket with the match being drawn. 🏏
WA – 302 & 5d-436
TAS – 432 & 2-117
MATCH REPORT – https://t.co/F5VmRMRLlY#WeAreTigers pic.twitter.com/ZjQwcD5k2k
The Tasmanians briefly flirted with the idea of chasing the runs before they shut up shop in the second session and hammered planks across the shop windows after tea.
WA’s Sunday century-makers added only one run to their overnight scores when play resumed on Monday.
Sam Whiteman fell for 117 before Cam Bancroft did it yet again. Yes, he was caught in the arc behind square leg after succumbing there in the first innings and six out of seven times last summer.
This time his leg-glance went finer than he would’ve liked – so fine that keeper Tim Paine accepted the catch.
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