‘A Young me Probably Would Panic’: Matthew Wade on How he Kept His Cool to Build a Match-winning Innings in Mohali

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The Indian conditions allow batters to put even good balls away for boundaries and that played a part in Australia’s successful chase of 209 in the first T20I, feels Matthew Wade.

The experienced wicketkeeper batter smashed an unbeaten 45 off 21 balls after Cameron Green’s 61 off 30 balls as the visitors made short work of a daunting target on Tuesday night.

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As many as 55 runs were needed off the last four overs but Wade found boundaries at will to avoid a tense finish.

“I’ve played enough now to understand it takes a little bit of time to find the pace of the wicket, although that wicket was terrific, terrific outfield and it’s lovely to bat on. Still takes a couple of balls to find your feet a little bit,” Wade told reporters after the match.

He continued, “A young me probably would panic in that situation and try to find a boundary really quicker than I need to. But yeah, I had great confidence in that outfield, how fast was running in the wicket that was coming on if you get bat on a few that you’re going to find a boundary.”

Talking about his role as a finisher, the 34-year-old Wade said experience has made him a lot wiser and he doesn’t rush into playing attacking strokes.

“The run rate dictates way you have to play. Grounds like we play in India, you hit the ball in the ground and you can still find the boundaries that puts a lot of pressure on the bowlers,” said Wade in the post-match press conference.

“They bowled me some yorkers and I managed to put them away. That keeps you calm, in the middle.”

With the way the wicket played, Wade said they backed themselves to win the game.

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“The way that we structured up today and the way that we drove the game early gave us every opportunity at the back end to win the game. Everybody that stepped out had really good intent; even (Josh) Inglis’s was a small innings but it keeps the momentum of the innings rolling.

“At seven and eight, through that period, kind of puts a lot pressure on down to the back end as you need 15 an over. So as a team and myself and Tim, I thought we really found a way to drive the game tonight, which was nice.

“It was a good wicket and a bit of dew came in. The outfield was beautiful as well. We have got a lot of depth to find a way to chase big scores,” said the southpaw.

Green opened for the first time in international cricket and came up with a match-winning effort and Wade was all praise for the all-rounder.

“He impresses every time I have seen him play. Saw him at Western Australia couple of years ago, he was a bowler who batted at nine. To see where he is now is quite remarkable. Coach and captain feels it is the best spot for him to find his feet in T20 cricket.

“He copped a bit of tap in the last over (of India’s innings). To turn around and give this performance these are good signs. We feel Greeny is our top-order player; if something happens, we need to pull him for the World Cup.”

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