It has been a weird couple of years for Glenn Maxwell. The Aussie all-rounder was at the top of his game and with 324 runs from 8 matches, he was a force to be reckoned with in the 2015 ICC World Cup.
It felt like nothing could go wrong for the Victorian and soon after the World Cup victory, he broke into the top 10 of the ICC one-day international batting rankings for the first time in his career.
However, he followed it up a slew of forgettable performances in the Indian Premier League where he made just 179 runs in 11 matches. Things did not improve after the tournament as over the next six international games, he averaged just 11.80 with a high score of 46.
That proved to be the final nail on the coffin as he was dropped from the Australia ODI squad for the first time since making his debut in 2012 and he became a part of the Australia A team.
However, the new year brought in a new lease of life in Maxwell’s fading career. The 28-year old had a decent run in the Big Bash League and was included in the squad for the Test series against India after Mitchell Marsh picked up an injury.
It was exactly the stroke of luck that Maxwell needed and he took complete advantage of the situation by scoring a career-best 104 in the third Test match in Ranchi.
The century did wonders to his confidence and it has shown in the way that he has performed in the Indian Premier League (IPL) this season.
From donning the captain’s hat for Kings XI Punjab to scoring runs at will, Maxwell has been an asset to his side. The KXIP skipper has scored 112 runs in 3 matches and he boasts of an impressive strike rate of 200 — the best in the tournament right now.
In the first two matches, he was able to finish the game for his team with whirlwind knocks and although KXIP faced their first defeat of IPL 2017 against Kolkata Knight Riders on Thursday, Maxwell’s 14-ball-25 was yet another reminder of his explosive batting capabilities.
The batting has been a strong point for KXIP in this season so far and as a result, Maxwell has received good support from his teammates. Hashim Amla scored a brilliant 32-ball fifty against Rising Pune Supergiant and opener Manan Vohra has also chipped in with a couple of crafty innings.
Amla and Vohra have produced two 50-run partnerships this season and if they can do it against Delhi Daredevils on Saturday, it will provide the perfect platform for Maxwell to play his own game.
However, it will not be an easy for Maxwell & Co as they will be facing one of the most economic bowling line-ups in the tournament so far.The pace trio of Zaheer Khan, Chris Morris and Pat Cummins have already taken 12 wickets in 2 matches and if we add spinners Amit Mishra and Shahbaz Nadeem to the mix, it can turn out to be a tough outing for the Kings XI Punjab batsmen.