Matthew Wade compiled an unbeaten fifty to steer Australia to victory in the third ODI and secure the series 2-1. The wicket-keeper batsman endured a nervy battle against West Indies skipper Kieron Pollard during the innings.
Kieron Pollard had issued a mankading warning to Matthew Wade at the non-striker’s end while bowling. The all-rounder opted to bowl off-spin during the two overs that he bowled in the game.
However, replays do suggest that Pollard waited for Wade to leave the crease before attempting to mankade him. Wade proceeded to quickly drag his foot back into the crease once he noticed Pollard going for a mankading attempt.
Wade entered the crease in a precarious situation at a score of 65-3. The visitors were still 88 runs away from the target. Australia were put under early pressure in the chase, with the new-look opening pair of Josh Phillipe and Moises Henriques making a poor start.
However, Wade played the anchor in the second half of the chase and helped Australia reach the target with 20 overs to spare. With the win, the five-time world champions avoided their first series defeat against West Indies since 1995.
Wade could have played his final ODI for Australia
Following the culmination of the fixture, Matthew Wade reflected on the nervy chase that looked comfortable on paper and lavished praise on Pollard despite the tense situation. He also admitted that the match could be the last ODI he plays for in national colors. He said:
‘I didn’t expect him to bowl off-spin. I thought he’d come off the long run and bowl cutters, like he has been. But it was just good banter stuff. I’ve played against these guys for a long time and he’s been a big part of the West Indies team from 2012, when I first started playing against them.”
Wade felt it was just friendly
“It was just a bit of friendly banter and I was just letting him know it was probably my last game for Australia in one-day cricket. It was just good fun,” Wade said to Cricket Australia
The 33-year-old made his ODI debut against India and has gone on to represent Australia in 95 matches in the format. Alex Carey is the first-choice wicket keeper, with Josh Phillipe playing second fiddle
Following the fixture, Pollard did not mince his words while speaking of the playing surface. He termed the pitch ‘unacceptable and absolutely ridiculous’.