After Australia was smashed all over the park in consecutive T20, ODI and Test match series’ at home against India, Glenn Maxwell decided to return the favour. Possibly feeling left out by all the centuries being scored by Test contenders in the Sheffield Shield, Maxwell smashed an unbeaten 113 off 55 balls to chase down India’s imposing score of 190 with 2 balls to spare.
Maxwell also top scored with 56 in the first match, a much lower scoring affair which Australia won 127-126 after Pat Cummins scored the winning runs on the final ball. In that match Maxwell was the only Australian apart from D’Arcy Short (who scored 37 and also contributed 40 in the second game) to make a reasonable score, and he was the top scorer (from both sides) in each game.
Aaron Finch, who remains the Australian captain for both T20s and ODIs, has now gone 19 consecutive short form games without reaching 50, and fell for a golden duck in the first match of this series before reaching 8 in the second. Marcus Stoinis, who was elevated to the Test squad during the Sri Lanka series but did not get a start, achieved a 1 followed by a 7.
Maxwell remains the most overlooked player in Australian cricket, after being controversially left out of the Test team last summer despite starring in the Shield and even more controversially still being excluded after the ball tampering trio were banned. He was seemingly on the outer even within the one day squad, being sent in to bat at 7 and constantly put in the position of trying to save matches with only tail-enders as partners.
After carrying Australia to victory in this T20 series, Maxwell will surely have to bat higher in the 5 upcoming ODI games, also in India. He has modified his game slightly to focus on playing more orthodox shots than the ridiculous and awe-inspiring switch hits and reverse sweeps that led to his nickname “The Big Show” but also saw him get out cheaply far too often.