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Maxwell is a Nightmare for Opposition Captains – Finch

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: March 28, 2019, 1:07 PM IST
Maxwell is a Nightmare for Opposition Captains – Finch

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With the World Cup around the corner, Glenn Maxwell’s encouraging form in the middle order will be a big boost for Australia’s chances. Maxwell, who scored his third T20I century against India recently, has found form at a time when the Australian top-order has bounced back as well.

Against Pakistan in the third ODI that Australia won to clinch the series, Maxwell hammered 71 off 55 balls to propel the total beyond 250, before they bowled out Pakistan for 186.

"Once Finchy got out, it was up to me to make sure I was there for as long as possible towards the end," Maxwell said after the game. "I got a little bit of luck being dropped [on 27], but to make the most of that and control the back-end was nice and it gives us something we can bowl at."

Maxwell’s is not just a destructive batsman for Australia, but his handy off-spin helps get overs out of the way in the middle of the innings. He is also an electric fielder, especially at point.

"Maxi is a player who people expect so much from every time he plays because he has so much brilliance at times," Finch said. "But I think what people don't see at times, when they get frustrated with him, is the amount of stuff he does in the field. If he averages 20 in a series, he might save 20 runs in the field as well.

"He bowls overs, gets some wickets. It all adds up to a great package. And the fact he's batting at six at the moment, to give us that little bit of extra firepower towards the back end is something we're conscious of and it's a role he fits really well."

The Australian captain believes Maxwell is a 360-degree batsman, who much like England’s Jos Buttler can destroy opposition attacks in no time.

"Guys who can hit the ball 360 [degrees] are so hard to bowl to. As a captain, they're a nightmare. There's a handful of them in the world now," he said.

"You've got Jos Buttler, who can scoop you over the keeper's head, but also hit over mid-off. They're two obvious places where you always have a fielder up when you've got five [fielders outside the 30-yard circle]. When you need both of them out, it creates some problems. Maxi is no different to that."

Maxwell, who captained the Melbourne Stars in the BBL, also brings that aspect of his game to the fore which helps Finch.

"I probably take care of certain positions for certain players, making sure the right guys are at the right position at the right time," Maxwell said. "And that just takes a load off his [Finch's] shoulders.

"He's got a lot to work on with bowling changes, the numbers going through his head and making sure the right guys are bowling the right overs. I just make sure the right people are in the right spots."
First Published: March 28, 2019, 1:07 PM IST
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