The perfect platform for Maxy to revive Test ambitions

Glenn Maxwell isn’t throwing away his white pads just yet and believes his special skills in the sub-continent could be the key to his baggy green return

Picking up a $1 million cheque and joining Virat Kohli’s Indian Premier League team this week could also be a major step in Glenn Maxwell’s continued Test ambitions.

Maxwell is one of 42 Aussies, including Steve Smith and white-ball captain Aaron Finch, in Thursday’s IPL auction, with reports out of India that Kohli’s Royal Challengers Bangalore are keen on securing the big-hitting all-rounder.

And Maxwell, who is in New Zealand for the upcoming T20 series, believes another full series in the IPL could better serve his Test claims rather than returning to Australia to play in the back-end of the Sheffield Shield.

Despite reports suggesting he was putting his white pads away, Maxwell said he hadn’t given up on adding to his seven Tests, which included a century in Ranchi in 2017.

Maxwell said the dust bowl pitch being used for the current Test between India and England, which has been maligned by plenty, was evidence that picking players out of the Shield for games in such foreign conditions was “difficult”.

Australia is scheduled to tour Pakistan, Sri Lanka and India in 2022 for Tests.

So Maxwell, who is now 32 and played all seven of his Tests in Asia, said he believed he could still push his Test claims without having to play every red-ball match in Australia.

“Next year there are quite a few subcontinent tours that I feel like I could certainly add something to that Test squad and I will certainly be doing everything in my power to try and get on those tours,” Maxwell said on Monday.

“I’m still very much in the prime of my career, there is still a bit time. I am fit and young. I feel like I still have a lot to give.

“If I can somehow get some red-ball cricket, or some time in Asia to work on my game over there, hopefully that can be enough to get myself back in the baggy green.

“Watching this current Test (in India), you are not facing these conditions in Australia so you are not probably learning a lot off Sheffield Shield cricket, you are not really getting a gauge on what guys will be like under that sort of pressure and with the ball spinning square, keeping low … it’s a different beast completely.

“You’ve got to go in with a lot more specialists who can adapt to spinning conditions and find a way to score.

“I’m hoping that can put me in good stead even if I don’t have the time in the Sheffield Shield. I’d I can find a way to play a few more serve sin the subcontinent, put up some good numbers and show I am still a good player of spin.”

Maxwell is unlikely to be available for the Sheffield Shield before the IPL, given he may need to serve 14 days in quarantine on arrival home from New Zealand, with Auckland back in lockdown after more COVID-19 positives.

Australia is due to play the fourth of five T20s in Auckland on March 5, and Maxwell was unsure if the latest breakout would have an effect.

“It’s out of our hands. We’re just hoping it gets cleared up quickly … and we can still play at Eden Park,” he said.

The Aussies play the fifth and final match against the Kiwis on March 7, with the IPL likely to start on April 11.

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