Maxwell acknowledges Langer's help in finding form

Glenn Maxwell, who crunched an aggressive 38-ball 56, to pilot Australia side to a tense five-wicket win against Zimbabwe in the T20I tri-series, revealed that the “little gesture” he made towards the head coach, Justin Langer, was to acknowledge the valuable insights on batting that the former opener had preached.

The swashbuckling batsman had a disappointing time in the IPL 2018, averaging just over 14. Subsequently, he couldn’t make an impression in the one-off T20I versus England and was dismissed for 10 in Australia’s previous tri-series match against Pakistan. The 29-year-old pointed out that he had worked hard with Langer to ensure he would watch the ball from the bowler’s hand better.

“I’ve been doing a fair bit of work with (Justin Langer) recently about making sure I was watching the ball as hard as I can,” he said on Friday (July 6). “I’ve been doing a lot of work in the nets making sure I’m really concentrating and that’s all I’m thinking about at the moment. It was just a little gesture towards him,” he added.

Maxwell gave a glimpse of his power-hitting by smashing five sixes, which included two hits into the stands while facing Wellington Masakadza. He also landed powerful blows off Malcolm Waller, the off-spinner. “The off-spinner came on after I’d been out there for about four or five overs so that was the time for me to go. Luckily I hit it over the ropes a few times and I was able to get some momentum. It was nice to spend a bit of time in the middle and get a bit of momentum with my batting,” he reckoned.

Maxwell also praised Travis Head after the batting duo stitched a 103-run stand for the third wicket. “(Head) takes pressure off you with the way he plays, he hits the ball in different areas and puts a bit of pressure back on the bowler. For me and him to put on a good partnership, we’ve done it a few times not just in T20s butin one daycricket. (We) put a bit of pressure on the field and run hard, (it) was good fun,” he noted.

Australia lock horns against Pakistan in Sunday’s tri-series final. Maxwell sounded confident of overcoming the top ranked T20I side. “This is the No.1 team we’re going to be going up against in the final and I know we’ve had a bit of recent success in tri-series with our win in Australia and New Zealand,” he said.

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