Maxwell in as Australia ring changes
Off-spinning all-rounder Glenn Maxwell has earned a first call-up to Australia’s limited-overs squads ahead of their tour of the United Arab Emirates to play Pakistan.
Twenty-three-year-old Victorian Maxwell, who recently impressed for Hampshire in the Friends Life t20 and has also represented Indian Premier League franchise Delhi Daredevils, is one of the fresh faces, while middle-order batsman Callum Ferguson and all-rounder Dan Christian gain recalls.
Mike Hussey returns after missing the 50-over matches against England due to the premature birth of his fourth child, while teenage paceman Pat Cummins is included, despite picking up a side strain at the Kia Oval that forced him to fly home early.
Shane Watson - another to pull up lame on these shores - and Ben Hilfenhaus have been rested in order to undergo strength and conditioning programmes, yet the latter does feature in Australia’s T20 squad, which also contains veteran spinner Brad Hogg and Cameron White, a former captain in the shortest format.
There is no place in either party for Peter Forrest, Steven Smith or Mitchell Johnson.
Commenting on the call-up of Maxwell, national selector John Inverarity said: “He’s a versatile and lively off-spinning all-rounder and brilliant fieldsman that has caught the eye of the NSP (National Selection Panel).
“An injury last January somewhat halted his progress but in recent months he has impressed in the IPL and with Hampshire. Glenn will provide another spin bowler option on the slow, low, turning wickets in the UAE.”
Inverarity added: “The squad for the ICC World Twenty20 will be announced on August 17 and the squad for the three T20s against Pakistan in September provides a strong indicator to this tournament.
“Michael Hussey's return to the fold in both squads will be welcomed. His all-round batting skills, the outstanding manner in which he prepares, and his unrelenting quest for excellence will add greatly to the team dynamic.”
Australia and Pakistan will do battle in three ODIs and three T20s, with the opening 50-over game taking place on August 28 in Sharjah.