Josh Hazlewood, an Australian fast bowler, has backed Glenn Maxwell to regain his form ahead of the T20 World Cup, saying the star all-arounder needs to have a free mindset to perform at his best.
Maxwell’s performance will be crucial to Australia defending their title as a T20 World Cup at home is quickly approaching. The all-rounder has scored just single digits in each of his last six T20Is, so it appears that his bat is currently off.
In the second T20I match between Australia and England in Canberra, Maxwell was back in the lineup, but he managed just eight runs in a loss that saw the visitors win the series with one game remaining. Another low score meant that Maxwell has now tallied only 16 runs off 33 balls in his last six innings at this level.
“I’ve played a lot with Glenn lately, in particular at RCB Royal Challengers Bangalore and the Australian team, and in all three aspects of the game he’s outstanding,” Josh Hazlewood said in Canberra after Australia’s defeat.
“He’s just that close to winning a game for us off his own bat or the ball or in the field. So he’s a key part of our team and just adds that balance beautifully.”
Aggressive middle-order allows Maxwell to play freely: Josh Hazlewood
Maxwell can play freely and instinctively thanks to the aggressive middle order, as per Hazlewood, and when he does that, he performs at his best.
Hazlewood added, “You don’t want him turning away from his instinct either. “That’s the one thing you want from Glenn constantly; he’s the kind of player who just reacts to what’s coming and plays his game.”
“Having that depth of batters, I think adds to that. He can just go out and play his game, whether it’s in the first six overs or outside that against spin – where he’s in particular pretty destructive. So I think he just (needs a) free mindset and (to) play his game,” Josh Hazlewood Added.
Maxwell is going through a remarkable dry spell right now; in his 93 T20 International games, this is the longest-run drought of his career. With his all-around brilliance, the 33-year-old is Australia’s third-most capped men’s T20I player and a proven match-winner.