Wade plans silent treatment for 'in your face' India
Vocal Aussie veteran says removing fuel for Virat Kohli to fire up about on-field during this summer's blockbuster Test series could be key
9 June 2020, 04:04 PM AEST
Fiery Australia batsman Matthew Wade says giving India the silent treatment is the best option this summer, believing Virat Kohli's India now thrive off verbal confrontations between players.
Wade, a forthright voice on the field whose on-field chirp helped him supplant Peter Nevill behind the stumps in the 2016-17 summer, says he will likely tone it down this summer to deny Kohli and Co an advantage.
Wade has had several run-ins with India in the past, most notably during the 2017 Test series in India when he was embroiled in a heated exchange with Ravindra Jadeja that was caught on the stump mics.
The 32-year-old Tasmania was also involved in spirited clashes during last winter's Ashes series in the UK and showed his tenacity by putting his body on the line against New Zealand's Neil Wagner last summer.
If selected for the much-anticipated contest, Wade insists he will still "go and play the way I like to play" in the four-Test Border-Gavaskar series.
"But we don't go out chasing it (a verbal confrontation)," Wade told reporters on Tuesday.
"If it comes our way you deal with it out on the field.
"They're a fierce team, as hard as any team I've ever played against.
"They're in your face, they're elite fielders – which India haven't been renowned for over a 20-year period – but they're up and about all the time when you're out there batting.
"It's going to be fierce. It was on a little bit (last series) but that's something I'm looking forward to."
India's last visit in the 2018-19 summer saw them win a series on Australian soil for the first time, and the Amazon Prime documentary The Test later revealed the frustrations the Australian camp felt when it came to Kohli's behaviour.
Playing their first home series since the 2018 ball-tampering scandal, head coach Justin Langer had cautioned his side to use "banter, not abuse".
Captain Tim Paine took the lead in the Perth Test, telling Murali Vijay that "you can't seriously like (Virat) as a bloke" and later ribbing rival wicketkeeper Rishabh Pant about babysitting duties.
Tim Paine doing some recruiting for the @HurricanesBBL out in the middle of the 'G... 😂 #AUSvIND pic.twitter.com/6btRZA3KI7— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) December 28, 2018
"They're a hard team, they use it to their advantage now very well," Wade said.
"Virat is very clever the way he uses his words or his body language. So they use it as an advantage now.
"To be honest, I don't really want to engage too much into that.
"I know that they thrive off that energy that comes between two players.
"They're probably as good at doing that as anyone in the world at the moment, so it's something I might stay away from this time."
With Steve Smith and David Warner back in the Australian side and the emergence of Marnus Labuschagne, Wade said the Australian team was now more settled and ready to defend their No.1 world ranking.
"They're a great team, and we're developing all the time as team too," Wade said.
"We're starting to get more settled now as a team over the last 12 to 18 months and we're ready to take on the challenge. It will be a great contest."