As the countdown to the ICC ODI World Cup enters its final stretch, Australia’s star all-rounder Glenn Maxwell finds himself entangled in a race against time. A fresh injury has put his participation in the coveted tournament at risk, with just a month remaining until the grand event.
Maxwell’s setback occurred during a training session in Durban, where he sustained an ankle injury while preparing for Australia’s T20I series against South Africa. Despite the setback, the 34-year-old player is set to fly back home to be by his wife’s side as they eagerly anticipate the arrival of their first child.
The injury raises concerns about Maxwell’s availability for the impending World Cup, with his recovery timeline aligning closely with the commencement of the tournament. National selector Tony Dodemaide, mindful of Maxwell’s injury history, including a freak leg injury from the previous year, stressed that a cautious approach would be taken to ensure the player’s well-being.
Dodemaide expressed optimism about Maxwell’s potential return, stating, “We will monitor Glenn’s recovery with a view to him being available for the three-match ODI series in India in advance of the World Cup.” This sentiment underscores the team’s commitment to facilitating Maxwell’s recuperation while not jeopardizing his long-term fitness.
Recognized as a quality all-rounder, Maxwell boasts an impressive ODI record with 128 matches played. He has accumulated 3,490 runs at an average of 33.88, coupled with a formidable strike rate of 124.82. On the bowling front, he has clinched 60 wickets with an economy rate of 5.56, showcasing his versatility and value to the Australian team.
Maxwell’s injury not only casts a shadow on his World Cup participation but also reshapes the squad dynamics. The door of opportunity swings open for Matthew Wade, who has received a call-up to the T20I squad for the South Africa series. Wade’s inclusion adds to the wicket-keeping options alongside Josh Inglis, offering a potential tactical advantage.
However, Maxwell isn’t the only absentee from Australia’s T20I squad. The team finds itself grappling with the unavailability of key players including Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Cameron Green, and David Warner. This constellation of challenges poses a formidable test for the Australian team as they gear up for the T20I series and the impending ODI World Cup.
As the cricketing community watches with bated breath, the next few weeks will unfold Maxwell’s journey towards recovery and his ultimate fate in the World Cup. With the clock ticking and uncertainties lingering, the Australian camp remains focused on striking the delicate balance between immediate aspirations and long-term well-being for their star all-rounder.
Australia T20 squad to face South Africa: Mitchell Marsh (c), Sean Abbott, Tim David, Ben Dwarshuis, Nathan Ellis, Aaron Hardie, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Spencer Johnson, Matt Short, Marcus Stoinis, Ashton Turner, Matthew Wade, Adam Zampa.