The match was delicately poised with Australia needing 39 off 23 balls to win when Wade top-edged a short ball from Mark Wood into his helmet.
The ball careened into the air and Wood ran down to Wade’s end to attempt a catch but the Australian wicketkeeper-batsman stuck an arm out to impede him.
WHAT A SCENE!#MarkWood was running to catch the ball and #MatthewWade pushed him away!And #England didn’t appeal!… https://t.co/Vv379dMntM
— BlueCap 🇮🇳 (@IndianzCricket) 1665328811000
Buttler said he was asked by the on-field umpires whether he intended to appeal but decided to let the moment pass. England went on to win by eight runs.
“They asked if I wanted to appeal and I said ‘no’. I’ve only just got to Australia so I thought just carry on with the game,” Buttler told reporters.
“It was hard because I didn’t know what I was appealing for … I could have asked some of the other boys to see if they had a better view but thought I would get on with the game.”
Asked whether he would appeal for a similar incident at the World Cup, Buttler said: “Maybe.”
Wade was criticised heavily on social media for blocking Wood, and his former Test team mate Usman Khawaja said on Twitter: “Can’t believe (England) didn’t appeal.”
Can’t believe they didn’t appeal 🤣☝🏾 https://t.co/wZcUuX6Z0M
— Usman Khawaja (@Uz_Khawaja) 1665316043000
Australia all-rounder Marcus Stoinis defended Wade.
“There’s a lot that goes on there when you get hit in the head and you’re running around,” he told reporters.
“You don’t know where the ball is … it is chaos.”
Dismissals for obstructing the field are rare in cricket but England all-rounder Ben Stokes fell foul of the rule when he blocked a throw at the stumps from bowler Mitchell Starc in a 2015 ODI against Australia at Lord’s.
Stokes was given out after Wade appealed for his wicket from behind the stumps.
The series moves to Canberra on Wednesday.