Somerset sign Australian batsman Wade

PUBLISHED: 08:45 23 December 2019 | UPDATED: 08:45 23 December 2019

Australia's Matthew Wade leaves the pitch after being dismissed during day four of the fifth test match at The Kia Oval, London.

Australia's Matthew Wade leaves the pitch after being dismissed during day four of the fifth test match at The Kia Oval, London.

PA Wire/PA Images

Somerset have announced the signing of Australian batsman Matthew Wade for the 2020 season.

The 31-year-old Wade will be available for the club's first seven fixtures in the Specsavers County Championship, starting against Warwickshire at Taunton in April subject to paperwork.

Wade has featured in 29 Tests, scoring over 1,300 runs at an average of 31.45 with a highest score of 117. In first-class cricket he has scored nearly 8,000 runs in his 145 games at an average of 41.25 with a top score of 152.

He has represented his country on 149 occasions across the three formats, scoring over 3,300 runs, taking 189 catches and claiming 22 stumpings.

Wade was in particularly fine form in this summer's Ashes series as Australia retained the famous urn, as one of only five players to feature in all five Tests for the visitors, scoring 337 runs including 117 in the fifth Test at the KIA Oval.

Somerset Director of Cricket Andy Hurry said: "When you're signing an overseas player, there are a number of criteria that you need to think about.

"You want your overseas to be a world-class performer, but you also need to look at what they will bring off the field. You want someone who is a leader on the pitch and someone who buys in to the club ethos. Matthew Wade will tick every single box.

"He is a world-class performer, he is extremely driven and he is a leader. He has vast experience and has captained Tasmania as well as leading Victoria to two Sheffield Shields.

"He was outstanding for Australia this summer with the bat and his record speaks for itself. We are delighted to have secured a player of his calibre for our opening seven County Championship matches of 2020."

Wade added: "It's an exciting challenge and one that I'm looking forward to. I got a good taste of English conditions last summer and it'll be good to come back over and to hopefully contribute to Somerset winning matches in the County Championship.

"Somerset have got a excellent squad and I'm looking forward to meeting up with the guys and to getting out on the pitch with them.

"I'm told that Somerset have a bit of a history of Australian players doing well for the club, so hopefully I can add my name to that list."

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