According to Lehmann, Wade had already set off for the pre-series training camp in the United Arab Emirates. While talking to reporters in Hamilton, the former Aussie southpaw said, “”He’ll be fine. He’s got on the plane. If there was any doubt, he wasn’t going to get on the plane. So that’s a good thing.”
Middle-order batsman Peter Handscomb had replaced Wade as the keeper in the defeats against New Zealand in Auckland and Hamilton. Handscomb had also donned the wicket-keeping gloves when Wade was sick during the third test of the series against Pakistan in January. Lehmann also said that Handscomb had been pretty decent with the gloves and also ruled out all chances of a comeback for Peter Neville, despite the latter displaying a rich vein of form with the willow in domestic cricket.
On Handscomb’s performances, Lehmann said, “He was a bit rusty when he only got 10 minutes notice at Eden Park. (But) he kept well (in Hamilton).” Wade will have his match fitness assessed in matches in the UAE and Mumbai. The head coach also said, “Unless something flares up during the Dubai leg or tour game, we’ll stay status quo. The bonus with the squad is you’ve got someone who can keep pretty well. That’s handy, having that just in case something happens.”
The regular captain Steven Smith suffered an ankle injury as a result of which Wade was appointed the skipper for the ODI series against the Kiwis. Lehmann confirmed the fact that Smith was in Dubai and was working on his batting. Australia had last won a test in India back in 2004 and it would indeed be a daunting task for it to outplay the Number 1 Test side on its own soil, given the fact that Virat Kohli and his troops have a enjoyed a tremendous run in the five-day format off late. The series is set to square off in Pune on February 23, followed by test matches in Bengaluru, Ranchi and Dharamsala.