Australia v Sri Lanka, 3rd ODI, Brisbane

Wade clears the air with Healy

Brydon Coverdale

January 16, 2013

Comments: 66 | Text size: A | A

Ian Healy and Matthew Wade, February 26, 2012. Sydney
Matthew Wade says Ian Healy's feedback is always welcome © Getty Images
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Matthew Wade has met with Ian Healy in Brisbane ahead of Friday's third one-day international and cleared the air over Healy's strong criticism of Wade's wicketkeeping last week. Wade said he took Healy's words as "constructive" and believed that while he had made a reasonable start to his international career over the past year, he knew the time had come for him to "go up a level".

Wade is back in Australia's ODI squad after being rested for the first two matches and in the lead-up to the one-day series he was the subject of harsh judgment from Healy, who during a radio interview said Wade had made all sorts of mistakes during the Test summer. However, Wade said he had spoken to Healy last week and met him in Brisbane on Tuesday to discuss how to improve his wicketkeeping.

"I took it as constructive," Wade said in Brisbane on Wednesday. "I flew up a couple of hours early yesterday and went and had a coffee with him and had a catch. We went through a few little different bits and pieces. I suppose it would have been easy for me to get grumpy about it. But I took it on board and I've tried to work on a few things. He's one of the best keepers who has ever played. His feedback is always welcome.

"I think there was a build-up to his comments [on radio] ... I rang him straight away and had a chat to him about it. He was a little bit disappointed about what had been written and said. I'm sure he'll call me up next time and deliver it straight to me instead."

Wade believes his time off following the Test series against Sri Lanka has allowed him to freshen up and has been especially valuable given the busy year he has had since becoming Australia's preferred gloveman in all formats. Over the past year, Wade has played 47 of a possible 50 matches for Australia in all formats and his heavy workload is set to continue on the upcoming tours of India and England.

But the man he replaced, Brad Haddin, performed impressively with bat and gloves when given a chance in the ODI side for the first two matches against Sri Lanka, and will keep the pressure on Wade if Australia take two wicketkeepers on their Test trips this year. Wade said he was pleased with how his first 12 months in the team had gone and after his short break he was ready to embark on another busy year.

"I think in general it's been a decent start," Wade said. "It's definitely something to build on. I've been in the team for 12 months now and I've got to look to get better and improve from now, from this point onwards, look to go up a level. That little break is almost the 12-month break for me. I got into the team last year in the Twenty20s so it's almost been 12 months to sit down and reflect on what I've done and now look to push my career further and further.

"I've definitely rocked up now after ten days off and feel really fresh. I'm excited to go to training and have a catch and have a bat. I'm not sure what the effects would have been down the line [if not rested], it's too hard to say, but all I can say is I'm ready to go."

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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Posted by ozziespirit on (January 19, 2013, 16:14 GMT)

This is embarrassing. England have Prior, we have Wade. And 74 all out to top it all off. All us Australian fans are now going to have to sit through back-to-back Ashes defeats, that's going to be fun..

Posted by Shaggy076 on (January 19, 2013, 0:45 GMT)

Front-Foor-Lunge; The argument has always been with the gloves, I cant see how you can justify that he failed with the gloves this game? Please enlighten us.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (January 18, 2013, 9:59 GMT)

Fortunately, I can't wait to see those that are usually absent from these boards in a crisis (Randy, that's you) respond to 74 all out and Wade failing with both gloves and bat yet again. Just how's he getting on again?

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (January 18, 2013, 9:55 GMT)

@RandyOZ, Welcome back mate, we missed you for the last few months and thousand Ashes. No doubt we won't see you for a few now after the 74 all out. Funny stuff.

Posted by Liquefierrrr on (January 18, 2013, 2:39 GMT)

@TommytuckerSaffa - good try, but Clarke now bats for so long that he faces the new ball again because he can bat right up to the next new ball, even the one after. He bats right into stumps, thus faces the opening bowlers fresh each morning, and simply outplayed the excellent Amla.

Amla is my favourite cricketer, so my bias, if any, would lie with him. But Clarke had a season that was so special it rewrote history in terms out output and the size of scores. His 4 x biggest knocks of the year resulted in him seeing at least 1, at times 2 brand new balls, and saw him bat over at least 2 days, ensuring he faced fresh bowlers, at times with brand new balls. So your argument doesn't make sense when put into context.

Nothing wrong with national pride, but when you attempt to undercut the fabulous, history-making year Clarke had you move past national pride into denial.

Amla may be the better batsman, though not by much and time will tell, but Clarke had the better year by far. End of.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (January 17, 2013, 22:03 GMT)

Front-Foot-Lunge; I saw that series but you said 5 years of domination so I checked what happened 5 years ago. Tommy-Tucker-Saffa Australia and South Africa have now played 2 series together and although Amla has been brilliant Clarke has outperformed him. And from comments you have posted previously Clarke has faced the better bowling attack. Hiding at number 5, cmon why would you change someone who is averaging a 100.

Posted by RandyOZ on (January 17, 2013, 16:36 GMT)

You know the English get worried when they crawl out from under their rocks (after going silent for the entire SA and Pakistan series) and start chirping. Funny stuff.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (January 17, 2013, 15:25 GMT)

@Shaggy076 I think you will find Hashim Amla is the worlds greatest batsman. Unlike Clarke he doesnt hide from the new ball by batting at 5 while debutants careers are left in tatters by being forced to bat above him. (quiney, etc)

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (January 17, 2013, 15:20 GMT)

Good, im glad Wade had a chat to Healy because boy oh boy did he need it. Some would say because of Wade's lack of keeping skills, Aus lost the series to SA and in doing so - the No.1 ranking. We all remember Wade dropping Faff de Plessis....how could we forget....Bring Healy out of retirement or get Haddin back in now!!! Especially before touring England. For Aus, touring England is like climbing mt everest without any clothes on - cold and certain doom!

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (January 17, 2013, 12:22 GMT)

@Shaggy076, Looks like someone should have asked Santa Claus for a couple of DVD's this Christmas. Starting with the 2009 Ashes. Boy have you got some catching up to do :)

Posted by bobsimmonds on (January 17, 2013, 8:34 GMT)

Thanks Healy for keeping our greatest keeper batsmen out of the test scene for 2 years while we put up with your incompetence. haddin has the record for most byes ever by a keeper at Lords - and many other records. Leave your personal comments at the commentary box door healy and give wade a go - at least he has done the right thing and contacted you. Please add some value with your comments or don't bother.

Posted by ygkd on (January 17, 2013, 4:18 GMT)

I can quite believe that Wade as a 16 year old playing District 1sts looked like a batsman-of-the-future. My point remains that, given that expectation, why do people expect that he would therefore become a good-enough keeper as well? Such things are too hard. There have been very few to have almost done both - Ames, Flower, Sangakarra and, of course, Gilchrist come to mind. The reason is, from age 9 or 10 when keeping skills should be really honed, 16yo future bats have been learning to bat. That's what will get them in regional and state squads after all. Keeping is like bowling spin. If you don't concentrate on it early enough you're only likely to be a part-timer. That's not to say that keepers shouldn't bat well, but that they shouldn't be expected to be as good as they would be if they didn't have the gloves, as over 100 years of Test cricket shows. Wayne Phillips' career with the gloves ruined his batting somewhat. Wade's learning-to-bat probably ruined his learning-to-keep.

Posted by ygkd on (January 17, 2013, 3:59 GMT)

@Meety, I thought MacGill left WA for a more suitable pitch. Agree on Emery - he was pretty unlucky to not have a decent Test career - and on Healy improving as he went. Also agree on Taibu and Rahim. But I don't know how stats can evolve to suit keeping. Everything comes third-hand, after the bowler and the batsman have had their go. Missed chances are the big one. That's what costs you matches. Yet, Wade was criticised for wanting to keep up to the stumps to quicker bowlers. To me, that's wanting to take wickets and should largely be encouraged. My only problem with it was that he's not experienced at it from a young age and it shows. If wicket-keeping stats were more relevant then it would encourage better techniques. Michael Hussey's job with the gloves for the Scorchers illustrated perfectly that a top field can do a job as a makeshift keeper standing back, but moving up a stumping chance will likely go awry straight off.

Posted by Moppa on (January 17, 2013, 3:50 GMT)

@Gilly4ever, seeing as you've done the research, do you mind naming the 9 internationals where Gilchrist was MOM for his keeping?

Posted by Shaggy076 on (January 17, 2013, 3:45 GMT)

Front-Foot-Lunge; Correct me if I'm wrong but 5 years ago Australia had just won the Ashes series 5-0 (How have england dominated for 5 years?) The last series when Prior was in Australia his keeping was as good as what Wade is now.Lyon has a better test record in our conditions than Swann and Anderson almost averages 40 per wicket in Ashes tests. We are about to play a test series in England where on our last tour there Cook averaged under 20. To top that off you have a crack at our captain who is the well established no 1 batsman in cricket.

Posted by Meety on (January 17, 2013, 2:03 GMT)

@ygkd on (January 16 2013, 20:38 PM GMT) - my memories of that era, was that Emery was a better keeper to spin than Healy, & Zoeherer was about the same as Healy to pacers. Healy was ultimately the better batsmen at the time. On all counts, the longer Healy played for Oz the better he was, & far exceeded what Zoeherer did for Oz. At the time of Healy making the Test team, I was pro-Zoeherer, & felt that Healy threw his wicket away too much. IMO - Zoeherer would never of coped trying to keep to Warne. or MacGill, (possibly why the latter moved from WA). Cricket really does need to evolve some performance based stats for Keeping, as dismissals per match is more reflective of how successful a side is rather than the Keeper. For example, I would of rated Taibu as one of the best keepers in world cricket when he was playing Tests, but he barely has 2 dissmisals a match & who'd want to be Rahim of Bangladesh? He could go a whole series without a nick!

Posted by Insult_2_Injury on (January 17, 2013, 2:00 GMT)

Ya havta larf don ya? Wade - 1st class debut @ 20, International debut @ 24. Recognised as a batting keeper and 12 months ago THIRD in line for Australia. Criticised because he's not the complete keeper after 9 Tests. Mind you his batting record in 9 Tests is avge - 42+, 2/100s, 2/50s. I'm thinking the only keepers with comparable starts to their careers would be vastly experienced (1st Class ) Gilchrist & Haddin. I watched him as a 16 yo District 1st player and thought he'd be a Test batsman. Didn't realise the 24hr news cycle 'experts' expected him to be the complete cricketer after 12 months of international cricket. Also didn't realise you are now expected to gain experience without playing! You can only imagine that under today's media crap that Rod 'Iron Gloves' Marsh woulda been gone after one series!

Posted by chicko1983 on (January 17, 2013, 1:31 GMT)

@ FFL - Prior didnt even displace the young Aussie keeper in the BBL (forget his name). And dont tell me he was selected as a batsmen instead of a keeper, he stunk at batting, didnt get past 20 and caught mid on in all innings bar one, going for a "big hit" (may have been a big hit in English terms).

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (January 17, 2013, 0:58 GMT)

Five long years of England dominance of Australia seems to have a left a few a tad jealous. What's funnier is that, given England continue to show they are another class ahead of Australia, just take a moment to look at how big the gulf is between the teams: England have the best Test Opener in the form of Mr Cook. Aussie fans know him well (Mr 766 for short). They have the spinner who is the long-established biggest turner of the ball in world cricket (Swann), and your old friend, the tormentor in chief in 2010 Mr Anderson - To name just a few. Australia have a Seamer pretending to be a spinner in Lyon, the worst gloveman in the history of the game in Wade, and a batting line up full of Anderson Bunnies. And all led by a hapless captain in Clarke. We can all safely say the Ashes will be residing at the home of cricket for the next ten years.

Posted by Barnesy4444 on (January 17, 2013, 0:46 GMT)

The biggest problem I see is with the culture Gilchrist has left behind. Young 'keepers now know they have no chance of selection unless they average 40 with the bat, despite their glovework. So it's obvious they will work on their batting more. Wade missed an easy stumping of Smith in Adelaide which not only cost another 90 runs or so but possibly also the test and series. Who cares if he can make a century against Sri Lanka batting at 6? Really?

Posted by Stampy15 on (January 16, 2013, 23:59 GMT)

While I'm not the biggest fan of Healy, he is being paid for his opinions as he is a commentator. Don't see what the big fuss is about. Think they need to toughen up and take it on board.

Posted by Jayzuz on (January 16, 2013, 23:02 GMT)

@ Front-Foot-Lunge, the only person humiliating himself - and his country - is you, with your constant hissing, sneering and jeering. I've never been to England, and you have convinced me to never step foot there.

Posted by   on (January 16, 2013, 22:57 GMT)

believe Healy was a bit blunt but he was correct, Wade shows a lot of great potential but needs to do a lot to get into his predecessors class, great credit to Wade for taking it on board and commenting public, some others would go and sulk.

Posted by Kolpak1989 on (January 16, 2013, 22:35 GMT)

@Front-Foot-Lunge, I watched Prior against Pakistan and India mate, I wouldn't be bragging about his glovework. He couldn't catch a cold.

Posted by ygkd on (January 16, 2013, 20:53 GMT)

On the subject of Man-of-the-Match awards, these are irrelevant as a guide to a keepers' glovework. A keeper will hardly ever win one no matter how good he is, unless he scores runs. Stumpings are the best guide, within reason - for it depends on who is bowling. I've seen highly-regarded young keepers who hardly have a stumping to their credit. We should be looking at those who can, if the situation arises, take three or four in an innings easily. Why? Because a quality stumping technique means the keeper's moving and anticipating well. One of the biggest problems for top young keepers is square-leg umpiring. The best will delay for the moment when the batsman slips forward, whipping the bails off in a flash and catching him on the line or just over. With a tv replay that's out. At clubland that's in, and often inches out is in too. The reality is that miles out is what is usually given and you don't have to be that good to take those opportunities. But you should be to play Tests.

Posted by ygkd on (January 16, 2013, 20:38 GMT)

I can't warm to Ian Healy as a commentator. Yet, to say Healy was a rubbish, know-nothing keeper is over-the-top. Healy was technically very, very good. I do not rank him alongside Knott who I believe was the best in my time, but would say that Healy's keeping to spin was far better than that of Rod Marsh, one of the all-time greats. Yes, Healy stuffed up at times. But then he was keeping to Shane Warne and that was far harder than keeping to Nathan Lyon is today. Indeed, Healy's masterclass segments on the subject are, I believe, as good or better than Jack Russell's and that's high praise indeed. Adam Gilchrist was also very good but he had to play as a bat or move to WA because the excellent Phil Emery was the NSW keeper. Glichrist, like Healy and no doubt Emery too, started young. Gilchrist bought his first gloves at the age of nine. Healy tried to play as many games as he could. Starting late as a keeper shows. Healy didn't do that. That's why he was so good, whatever anyone says.

Posted by Dashgar on (January 16, 2013, 15:45 GMT)

Hi front-foot-lunge. We're all still here. Matt Prior is laughing is he? Swann, Anderson and the muppets who'll support them definitely weren't laughing. Wade will tear your bowlers apart with the bat and if he keeps up this attitude of always trying to learn he'll soon be a star with the gloves as well. I guess after England's performance last night you needed to troll on the Aussie articles to cheer yourself up.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (January 16, 2013, 15:06 GMT)

Well the worst wicketkeeper in world cricket has to start somewhere I suppose. The question is, where are those posters who were singing Wade's praises before he humiliated himself on the world stage? England and Prior must be laughing at all of this.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (January 16, 2013, 14:17 GMT)

Oh by the way, of Healy's 4 man of the match performances (2 in tests, 2 in ODIs), 0 were for keeping. Of Adam Gilchrist's 36 (8 in tests, 28 in ODIs), 9 of them were for keeping. Sorry to burst the bubble of all you guys who don't bother to check your facts.

Posted by James_Murphy on (January 16, 2013, 13:34 GMT)

Healy is a joke. His comments are deluded and he contradicts himself all the time on Tv. Tries to be hard hitting, comes across as an uneducated fool. The thing I like about other past stars (Gilchrist, Langer, McGrath, even Warne) they never bag a fellow Australian cricketer and are only willing to help them in private or let the Aus coaches do their job. Its never about them, they remember when they were young and hungry and want to help the young guys succeed. I cant remember McGrath taking potshots at Johnson, or Warne at Lyon even though they have every right to. Healy also never had to worry about fatigue from batting like Wade does because he averaged 27. He wouldn't get a gig in a state side these days.

Posted by yquestion on (January 16, 2013, 12:27 GMT)

Probably not the most tactful way of providing advice to a young up and coming international player but good head on a young set of shoulders to accept the advice from a legend of the game. OK - Healy didn't have the batting class but worked hard on this and was a grafter in the end with some good scores towards the end of his career. In terms of glove work - bring up a few youtube clips of Healy taking catches and stumpings off Warne and then compare that to gilly. I really love Gilly for his all round ability but Healy's glove speed and footwork behind the stumps was far superior supporting bowlers like Warne, Tim May, Greg Mathews as well as standing up to the stumps sometimes with the likes of the Waugh brothers bowling medium pace etc. I also remember in the early 90's Gilly played for NSW and didn't always even take the gloves in matches...So that gives you a sign as well. #Healylegend

Posted by Busie1979 on (January 16, 2013, 11:35 GMT)

@gilly4ever - I usually rely on stats as my guide and think they are too readily ignored (I am thinking of D. Hussey in particular). I don't think stats are a good guide to judge a wicketkeeper. So much depends on context - who is bowling, what is the pitch doing, are the chances easy or difficult, is a missed chance a chance that has been created by good wicketkeeping that a lesser keeper wouldn't have ever got a glove on, etc. Not sure about your argument that Healy was disliked and not a good keeper and picked simply because he was not Zoehrer and Dyer. That doesn't make sense - not that selectors always make sense. I think keeping was harder in Healy's day - fielding wasn't as good, fielders didn't go for the direct hit as often, the pitches has more gremlins, etc. Healy's batting wasn't up to scratch, but I remember him as a damn good keeper.

Posted by Moppa on (January 16, 2013, 10:55 GMT)

PS: having been distracted by Gilly4ever, I failed to address the key point - as @Dashgar and @Behind_thebowlersarm have said, a great attitude from Wade. His keeping to pace is good I think, but needs a lot of work to the spinners. At least he has the attitude and willingness to learn to give himself every chance of, one day, being a Test quality gloveman to spin. I'd like to see Healy and Wade forget about the coffee, grab some gloves and head to the nets though. They're a similar height, I suspect, so I'm sure Wade could learn tons from Healy (Wade has blamed in part his difficulties with spin to his height preventing him from taking balls that bounce excessively)

Posted by Moppa on (January 16, 2013, 10:50 GMT)

@Gilly4ever, I'm not going to rubbish your comments (which are rubbish, incidentally), by rubbishing Gilchrist, who was an excellent and reliable keeper as well as a devastating batsman - a legend and a game-changer, both in terms of individual matches and how keepers, selectors and fans view cricket and the role of the keeper. However, in my view Healy was the better gloveman. I watched him for many years and didn't really appreciate how good he was - I just thought keepers never dropped anything. Far from useless, he was more like flawless - meticulous in his preparation and made the difficult look easy with excellent footwork. Clearly, you don't like the guy - and I fear that has clouded your judgement. I don't doubt he was an irritating git to have behind the stumps whilst batting (that's probably deliberate!) and I find his commentary annoying... but he's the best gloveman I've seen. I'm not old enough to have seen Alan Knott etc, but I think Healy must be up there.

Posted by McCricket_ on (January 16, 2013, 10:33 GMT)

For those quoting stats, fair play and each to his own etc etc . . . and for me Gilly is the best keeper-batsman ever.

But . . . a fair point in any comparison between keepers is that it's the bowlers (and opposition batsmen) who create the keepers' opportunities. Sure the keepers need to convert them, but: Healy only played half his career to the best bowling attack in world cricket (his first half was in our build up period). Gilly had the world's best for his entire career. Haddin was worst placed during our recovery years and Wade has a line-up of 8 very decent bowlers to keep to. Only Gilly had the cream of the crop creating opportunities for his entire career.

I don't take from away any of Gilly's accomplishments -- he is THE player I would manufacture reasons to watch on TV if he was batting in a Test or ODI, but I think that some perspective is needed when comparing keepers and the amount of catches taken, stumpings made, or MOTM awards given.

Posted by swauzzie on (January 16, 2013, 10:03 GMT)

@Gilly4ever Wade would be a baffoon to not listen to Healy. I wonder if you ever saw Healy play? Probably not 'eh? You appear to be all about stats & not live reality. Comparing the two Healy & Gilly isn't really fair. Because they played in two different "eras". Gilly was in the era that Oz were totally inviceable. Healy came in when the Aussies were mediocre at best. Healy was a workhorse- a true blue collar boy & ground out at least the first 2/3rds of his career, the latter part became alot easier because of the step up in class of players & that winning became easier - it became a culture in the Aussie side. I personally think they were the best keepers for their time - horses for courses. Now a keeper NEEDS to be an allrounder. Wasn't like that before.

Posted by Dolci on (January 16, 2013, 9:58 GMT)

@Gilly4ever. I remember many many years ago (when Gilly had just started playing tests) reading an I Healy article about Gilchrist and how bad he was at keeping and batting. The recent article that he wrote about Wade is a very similar article. I wish Healy would crawl back into his little box and keep his pitiful comments to himself. Healy was over rated, he couldnt bat and he was average at keeping, however he did have a very big mouth and was excellent at sledging.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (January 16, 2013, 9:44 GMT)

Gilly4Ever - Do you actually believe what you wrote. Firstly, we are talking about the ability with the gloves - How many of those Man of the Matches from Gilly were due to his glove work? They were all because his batting. One more dismissal per match well that is the bowlers creating more chances in Gilly's time. Mcgrath was the mainstay during the period and he got a lot of fine nicks that were easy to catch. I would love to know the stat on percentage of chances taken. Not Healys fault his bowlers got less nicks. Personally purely for glove work I thought Healy was better than Gilchrist. Healy was ordinary for a year but soon became a great keeper and the reason he stayed in the team when Gilly was making so many runs. As for gilly best batsman of all time for a wk but thought his foot work was more leaden than Healy and suspect he put down more chances than Healy.

Posted by disco_bob on (January 16, 2013, 9:29 GMT)

If Heals wants to give Wade advice, then it's worth listening to. After digesting it Wade can work out for himself if there is anything in it, reject what he considers incorrect and take on board anything he thinks is useful.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (January 16, 2013, 8:45 GMT)

Here's some stats comparisons between Healy vs Gilchrist: 1) Gilchrist averaged 1 dismissal per match more than Healy in tests, took more stumpings and had 1/3rd as many errors (missed catches etc). 2) Gilchrist earned 15 times as many man of the match awards. 3) Healy was never, not for 1 day even, the best keeper in the country - he was only put in the position because the selectors couldn't decide between Tim Zoehrer and Greg Dyer and it was so close between the two and so nasty that they decided to bring up someone who wasn't even the state keeper, Ian Healy, while Adam Gilchrist was so far ahead of Healy that Healy wasn't even allowed to have his home test to say goodbye. I could go on but that should be enough. Ian Healy was NOT a good wicket keeper, let alone the best ever. Ian Healy was someone who was disliked by everyone, except for Shane Warne, who stood up for him. Wade should not listen to a single thing he says. Stick to Gilly if you want top advice.

Posted by ygkd on (January 16, 2013, 8:43 GMT)

Rod Marsh's first year of international cricket consisted of six Tests and one ODI (the very first). That's less than one day in ten actually playing for Australia. Plenty of time then to improve on the job. Wade's working-on-things has to have been fitted in between nine Tests, 25 ODIs and a heap of T20s in the last 12 months. That's why Marsh was able to improve so much - he had so much opportunity to really practice which Wade doesn't have. The quote - "....after ten days off .... feel really fresh. I'm excited to go to training and have a catch and have a bat" backs up what I'm saying. I do not believe that Wade continuing to play so many international games will help him improve as much as he needs to. 'Having a catch' will not address the issue either. He already catches pretty well. It is his footwork and anticipation to spin that needs to be honed over many, many non-playing days and in a busy schedule there just won't be enough time for that, like there was with Rod Marsh.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (January 16, 2013, 8:40 GMT)

Ian Healy was only put in the job because of the fight, or, I should say, war, between Tim Zoehrer and Greg Dyer as to who was the better wicket keeper. They couldn't decide so they picked an outsider, and tried to mould him into the best wicket keeper. Their first option was the batsman Wayne Phillips. When that failed, they tried Ian Healy. Adam Gilchrist, in comparison, was so good that he got to Healy's dismissal level in just 2/3rds of the game, with a whopping 15 times as many man of the match performances, off the same number of matches, including most catches in a match, many more stumpings and was overall a far superior wicket keeper than Ian Healy. Anyone who thinks that Ian Healy was a superior keeper isn't doing it based on watching him - the guy was utterly hopeless. Rather, you are doing it based on the lies that the commentators were required to tell about him - lies that they had to tell in order to quell the fire of support for Zoehrer and Dyer. Wade can ignore him.

Posted by Meety on (January 16, 2013, 8:12 GMT)

@goodhoot on (January 16 2013, 07:33 AM GMT) - so true regarding Lyon, miling like nothing happenned! He should have a bit of a hissy fit & stomp around a bit more, muttering to himself! Should help Wade focus the mind! @dunger.bob on (January 16 2013, 07:33 AM GMT) - there are plenty of keepers (overseas) who have come to Healy to sort things out. He was supposed to have been taken out of context, so I think it shows both Healy & Wade in a good light that they have gotten on with business!

Posted by Meety on (January 16, 2013, 8:05 GMT)

@Ishfaq333 on (January 16 2013, 05:09 AM GMT) - I think Haddin USE to be a better batsmen, about a year or so BEFORE his Test debut. I think he is still a better player of spin bowling as a batsmen. As far as keeping is concerned, I think Haddin at his best & against spinners is a better Keeper, but I think Haddin's best is behind him & Wade is better. @LewisDuckworth on (January 16 2013, 05:44 AM GMT) - stats can deceive. There was about 4 summers in a row where Haddin was averaging between 50 & 65 for NSW, his career ave went from low 20s to the high 30s. I think Wade though is miles better in an age for age comparison. (i.e both at age 24). @ RJHB on (January 16 2013, 06:08 AM GMT) - during the last 2/3rds of Healy's career his keeping was way better than anything Gilly did. Healy's batting in the middle 3rd (roughly) of his career was brilliant, he scored so many runs when Oz needed it. His last 15 tests were poor batting-wise.

Posted by Nightwing32 on (January 16, 2013, 7:53 GMT)

Stats don't tell the story, Healy was the best keeper I have ever seen. The problem is that Gilchrist changed the role of the keeper. Keeper isn't and shouldn't be about the batting, it shouldn't be Gilchrist > Healy as a keeper, however batsman yes. How Healy kept to Warne and MacGill was just awe inspiring. Wade getting help from Heals is a good thing considering how many chances Lyon missed out on. And people are calling Lyon to be dropped...Anyway Healy >> Gilchrist as a keeper. Who cares about 100's and MoM awards and how many matches they played Healy was always the better keeper.

Posted by jwayong on (January 16, 2013, 7:35 GMT)

I don't understand Ian Healy! The key to being a great wicketkeeper is patience! The stats shows Wade has 31 dismissals after 9 tests, Ian Healy only had 23 after 9 tests. Not to mention Wade's 2 Centuries that won Australia the matches. It's clearly only the beginning for Wade and he can only get better! Healy didn't need to go public with this. Even Gilchrist (which by stats are superior to Healy) has faith in Wade.

Wade missed some catches and stumping against South Africa, but that is the learning that he said he will take!

Posted by dunger.bob on (January 16, 2013, 7:33 GMT)

@ RJHB on (January 16 2013, 06:08 AM GMT) : damn right !! Healy is the master technician. He kept wickets for two of the very best bowlers Aus has ever produced and he did it brilliantly for years. .. In the current parlance he was an integral player in a super high performance machine. He also has an educated grasp of bio-mechanics and is NEVER short of an idea or two. .. simply the best wicket-keeper it's ever been my pleasure to watch. .. now to Gilly : There seems to be a popularist myth that he was a relatively ordinary keeper. .. that's just clap-trap. .. he also kept wickets to Warne, McGrath and Gillespie. .. he also did it brilliantly. .. it's just that he was such a kick-backside batsman that most people think he can't have been a great keeper as well. . Not so my friends. He was as good as Healy minus 0.5 of 1%. . . now for Wade. .. I've no idea. He really does need to pick up his basic keeping skills so I would say that if he can do that he will be worthy. If not, see ya

Posted by goodhoot on (January 16, 2013, 7:33 GMT)

As a test cricketer you will always have critics,some right,most wrong but allowed to voice an opinion anyway.I think Matt Wade needs to listen to Ian Healy's advice,it may clean up his technique some.Against SA Wade dropped Du Plessis?or Smith not sure which they went to a big score.He has missed stumpings & catches from Nathan Lyon who smiles like nothing has happened.Playing in the ashes series making blunders like that he'll be laughed out of England.Catches win matches!

Posted by shelts7 on (January 16, 2013, 7:04 GMT)

Wade is still young and will improve with time. Remember they used to call Rod Marsh old iron gloves when he started.

Posted by   on (January 16, 2013, 6:47 GMT)

If I was Mathew Wade, I wouldnt give Healy the time of day. First Healy says Wade can be a Gilchrist then hes running him down behind his back, and then has a cuppa tea chit chat and smiles in his face. What a real man Healy is.

Posted by Jayzuz on (January 16, 2013, 6:46 GMT)

Media always stir up comments and make them sounds as abrasive as possible, and this was no exception. They know that stirred-up readers will talk, and that's hits/publicity. The Warner comments on the SA ball watching were the classic example. "The batsmen need to watch the ball" was somehow twisted into a virile attack on SA. It was total nonsense, and the worst part was that so many posters here on cricinfo didn't separate the words of Warner from the headline and spin of the writer.

Posted by Bishop on (January 16, 2013, 6:34 GMT)

@Gilly4ever Gilchrist wasn't a great keeper. He was a very competent keeper, but it was his batting that made him a great. His career redefined what was expected of a Wk-batsman, and made the specialist keeper a thing of the past, which I think was sad for cricket. While he was playing, he wasn't the best gloveman in Australia, let alone the world, but his batting more than made up for it. The problem now is in an effort to find keepers like him, sides are turning to good batsmen who aren't "very competent" or even "competent". Haddin was the first - good with the bat, okay with the gloves - now Wade - v.good with the bat, so-so with the gloves. We'll have Kamran Akmal next. Best Australian gloveman in the past couple of decades? Graham Manou, but because Gilchrist changed the game, pure glovework just isn't enough. Pity.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (January 16, 2013, 6:32 GMT)

I think Wade has shown a great attitude towards the criticism and trying to learn. LewisDuckworth dismissals a game is one of the most useless stats going around, a bowler creates these chances and some games there are no chances other games there are heaps.The only useful stat for wicket keepers is missed chances. However no-one seems to keep these stats

Posted by X_Bat on (January 16, 2013, 6:27 GMT)

Healy, the be all and end all of Australian wicket keeping, or so it seems. His public comments on Wade's keeping were potentially damaging for a young player with enormous potential busting his guts to make it. He should have offered his advice in a constructive, more private way. Credit to Wade to sort Healy out by meeting him. As for Healy's test record, wasted opportunity, 22 50's and only 4 100's in 182 innings! So awkward and ungainly as a batsman, he was painful to watch, but keeping was his thing. Pity Gilly wasn't around earlier to bring in the new age of 'keeping, continued by Haddin/Wade.

Posted by RJHB on (January 16, 2013, 6:08 GMT)

Thats way harsh on Healy Gilly4Ever!! I think Heals record is actually rather good whichever way you look at it and if you were actually old enough to have seen him you'd think he was pretty good too. No less than Shane Warne thought he was the best keeper he played with. His batting was ok too but we were just spoiled to have seen someone as exceptional as Gilchrist who redefined what was expected of a keeper as a batsman. Heals had an ordinary start, like Wade now,like Marsh before him...but they became the best in the business as hopefully Wade will too. I'm glad Heals has got off his very high horse and actually given Wade a bit of coaching too instead of just shooting loudly from his gob!

Posted by takenaback on (January 16, 2013, 5:55 GMT)

Healy is another commentator getting paid to talk and unfortunately it's not always correct and often critical. Wade is very impressive in the way he has handled this. The only commentator I respected out of the biased channel 9 commentators sadly passed recently.

Posted by LewisDuckworth on (January 16, 2013, 5:44 GMT)

Sorry @Ishfaq333, but the stats don't lie. Haddin has a first class batting average of 39.43 with 476 catches & 31 stumpings in 149 FC games averaging 3.40 dismisals a match. Wade has a first calss batting average of 41.11 with 226 catches & 7 stumpings in 62 FC games averaging 3.76 dismisals a match, so Wade's ahead in both departments. Plus he's 10 years younger. Also don't forget the standard of Haddin's glovework and batting last summer, horrible would be a kind way of describing it!

Posted by Meety on (January 16, 2013, 5:19 GMT)

@Behind_the_bowlers_arm on (January 16 2013, 04:22 AM GMT) at the moment there definately won't be a Wade - Lyon stand!!!!!

Posted by Ishfaq333 on (January 16, 2013, 5:09 GMT)

I am yet to be convinced Wade's the best wicket keeper in Australia. His glove-work is deceiving to be honest. Bloke manages those flaring dives down the leg side but a proper keeper would know he was a step late. Foot work unsatisfactory. A good leggie would have him scrambling like an infant in chase of a bird feather. Age is what the selectors are attracted to in him and that is what gives him the edge over Brad Haddin. I do not have the stats to prove this but call me crazy Haddin's a better batsman and a way better keeper. Only problem - he is 35.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (January 16, 2013, 4:56 GMT)

Wadey, I wouldn't worry about what Ian Healy says. He was a major burden to the Australian side, earning just 4 man of the match awards in his 280 international matches. You have managed 3 in just 40. Without looking at just how many errors that Healy made early in his career (or throughout 90% of it), which is always a bit debatable, I'd say that you are a long, long way ahead of Healy. If you want to take advice, take it from someone who did better than you have done, like Adam Gilchrist, not from someone whose only record is most tests by a wicket keeper.

Posted by Meety on (January 16, 2013, 4:21 GMT)

I can see why a lot of people had the grumps with the NSP over resting players, but when you see he (Wade) has played 47 out of a possible 50games, it's hard to argue against his rotation on an individual basis. == == == Given Healy had made some really positive comments about Wade a week or so earlier than his rant, Ian needs to guard against becoming one of those "old fogies" who noone ever listens to because they contradict themselves & are always ranting. (Some would say he is already at that stage, I don't think so - yet!)

Posted by DylanBrah on (January 16, 2013, 4:20 GMT)

Healy was too harsh and should have kept his comments private with Wade.

Posted by Big_Maxy_Walker on (January 16, 2013, 4:19 GMT)

i agreed with everything healy said except his backing of brad haddin given brads form with the gloves before he was dropped, plus the fact he should have been shown the door earlier. i dont get this fascination with haddin, his battings okay at the moment, but hes injury prone, a bad gloveman, and a big mouth who cant back up what he says wade should be the primary keeper with paine as the backup in india and england

Posted by Edwards_Anderson on (January 16, 2013, 4:17 GMT)

Good to see, I think Wade won't find better folks then Healey to help him with his glovework, we can only have either one of Haddin or Wade in the team and because of his age i have to lean towards Wade, just needs to improve his glovework which i am sure I will.

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Brydon CoverdaleClose
Brydon Coverdale Assistant Editor Possibly the only person to win a headline-writing award for a title with the word "heifers" in it, Brydon decided agricultural journalism wasn't for him when he took up his position with ESPNcricinfo in Melbourne. His cricketing career peaked with an unbeaten 85 in the seconds for a small team in rural Victoria on a day when they could not scrounge up 11 players and Brydon, tragically, ran out of partners to help him reach his century. He is also a compulsive TV game-show contestant and has appeared on half a dozen shows in Australia.
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