Former Australian cricketer Brad Hogg opined that wicketkeeper-batter Matthew Wade has not played a lot of IPL cricket due to his lack of consistency with the willow. Hogg pointed out franchises need to have the confidence that he can do a job for them on a constant basis before picking him.
Wade, who was player of the match for his unbeaten 41 off 17 balls against Pakistan in the T20 World Cup 2021 semi-final, has only played three IPL games so far and that too back in 2011. The 33-year-old went unsold at the IPL 2021 auction as well.
During a Q & A session on his YouTube channel, Hogg was asked why Wade hasn’t featured in the IPL on a regular basis. The former left-arm spinner explained:
“Because of his (lack of) consistency, he wouldn’t be my front line selection. What he did last night (in the semi-finals against Pakistan) was a one-off scenario. He had a little bit of luck. Would you after that performance go and pick him in an IPL auction? No, you wouldn’t. You’d go through the stats and see how he performs over the next couple of months in similar roles. You don’t want to make that mistake.”
Hogg, however, admitted that Wade is a versatile cricketer who is capable of making an impact in the IPL if picked. He added:
“Wade is a versatile cricketer. If he gets picked, he can bat at the top of the order. But, you’d mainly want to pick him to finish the innings because that’s what he has done most for Australia as well.”
Wade has featured in 54 T20Is for Australia in which he has scored 729 runs at a strike rate of 127.
“He provides a huge amount of flexibility to our team” – Aaron Finch on Matthew Wade
Australian skipper Aaron Finch heaped praise on Wade, terming him a versatile batter who provides a lot of flexibility to the team.
Speaking ahead of the T20 World Cup 2021 final, Finch revealed that Australia had pondered the possibility of promoting Wade higher in the order in the semis but eventually decided to hold him back. He said:
“Initially we talked about the other day, of the possibility of Matt (Matthew Wade) going in a little bit further up the order specially Shadab (Khan) with a couple of overs to go. But we decided to hold him back towards the end and it paid off there.”
Hailing Wade, Finch added:
“He is someone who is a really versatile batter. He has opened the batting, batted at three and now he is down at seven. He provides a huge amount of flexibility to our team.”
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Wade and Marcus Stoinis (40*) featured in a sixth-wicket stand of 81 in the semi-final against Pakistan to lift Australia to a famous win.