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Foul language: Tim Paine downplays Ashes sledging row

Nathan Lyon of Australia celebrates taking the wicket of Ben Stokes of England in a heated third day's action.

Nathan Lyon of Australia celebrates taking the wicket of Ben Stokes of England in a heated third day’s action.Credit:Getty Images

Wade was also spoken to by Erasmus’s partner Kumar Dharmasena, the pair stepping in to defuse any escalation between the two sides, who have, on the whole, played for the urn in good spirits in contrast to the bitter battle in 2017/18.

The run-in between Wade and Root is one of the rare instances umpires have warned Australia for their on-field behaviour since they pledged to clean up their act in the wake of the ball tampering controversy in South Africa last year.

The side has since avoided censure from the International Cricket Council, a point proudly raised by Cricket Australia chief executive Kevin Roberts before play on day three.

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The combative Wade, who was once recalled to the Test side for his voice more so than his form, has tested the patience of England players this series with his endless chirp in the field, though much of it has been inane instead of offensive.

Wade also gave thinly-veiled advice to Dharmasena after the umpire turned down a shout for lbw against Ben Stokes off the bowling of Marnus Labuschagne.

As Labuschagne was seeking clarification at the end of the over as to whether the batsman had offered a shot, Wade pulled his teammate away telling him within earshot of the umpire that he had clearly set a precedent for the rest of the game.

Paine said there was nothing untoward in the incident between Root and Wade.

Matthew Wade of Australia.

Matthew Wade of Australia.Credit:Getty Images

“You tell me. I think we’ve been fantastic, I think both sides have played this series in good spirit,” Paine said.

“It’s competitive Test cricket and people are going to talk to each other. I don’t know why it’s such an issue. It’s fine.

“They are grown men having a conversation, no one is swearing, no one is abusing anyone. It’s Test match cricket and I don’t understand why so much is made of something so little, particularly given the standard of cricket being played. I think there’s so much more to talk about.”

Denly defended Wade, saying the Tasmanian had not over-stepped the mark with his verbal barrage. “I think it’s two very competitive teams playing a big series. Matthew Wade is a very competitive player and just trying to do his best for Australia,” Denly said. “There’s always going to be a bit of niggle but nothing over the line, just a bit of friendly banter.”

Denly said he was unaware what led to Stokes’s foul-mouthed tirade at Warner.

“No, I didn’t hear anything about Bristol. When Ben comes to the crease, the kind of player he is, they’re going to try and unsettle him, but Stokesy deals with that pretty well,” Denly said.

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