Arthur has promised to use Maxwell at some point during the four-Test series against India
Despite not having played first-class cricket in over two months, Australia all-rounder Glenn Maxwell is still making an impact, only it is in the nets, where he continues to master the variations and flight of off-spin.
Maxwell may not have been selected for the first Test against India in Chennai, but Australia coach Mickey Arthur has assured him that his off-spin bowling and aggressive batting style would come in handy at some point during the four-Test series.
Prior to the start of the India series, Maxwell was seen as the perfect candidate to fill the all-rounder’s spot, which was recently vacated by Shane Watson after he decided to quit bowling in order to prolong his international career.
Arthur noted that Maxwell’s spin would be extremely useful on the Indian pitches since they are known to be a spinner’s paradise and also due to the fact that Nathan Lyon could do with some help since he is the only full-time spinner included in the squad.
“We’ve tried to cover every base that we can,” Arthur said. “We could play a spinning all-rounder, we could play a seam-up all-rounder, we will have the option of two spinners, we’ll probably have as many as five quicks going over. We’ll try and cover as many of the bases as we possibly can and then determine team that plays based on the conditions that we face.
“We have the option of slotting Wadey up to 6 and playing a spinning allrounder or a seaming allrounder, but we’ll have that position at No.7 available. If we want to go with the six specialist batsmen then that will be the wicketkeeper’s position. Those are the things we have to weigh up.”
Arthur also stated that he had been impressed with the impact Maxwell had made ever since being earmarked for success by the national selectors at the beginning of the Test summer.
“Maxwell has bowled extremely well, he is getting better and better,” Arthur said. “I thought he bowled really well in Hobart in the last one-day game, albeit he only bowled two overs, but there was good shape on the ball and he did a nice job. In these two Twenty20 games he has done a nice job. He works incredibly hard.
“One of the things we’ve sat down and said is if you want to be the spinning all-rounder you’ve got to put a huge amount of time into your bowling, because Maxy would always try to bowl the miracle ball and then he’d bowl a leggie, then try a doosra, he just didn’t settle on anything. All we’ve got him in the nets is bowling off-spin, off-spin, off-spin. It’s repetition all the time and he’s getting better and better at it. He’s a very fast learner.”
While everybody has heard the saying patience is a virtue, it certainly isn’t the case for Maxwell, who seems extremely eager to become a regular face on the Australian roster, but even he admitted that it was time to settle down and concentrate on working and developing his game even further in order to convince the national selectors that they had chosen the right man to become the country’s next all-rounder.
“It [patience] is something I’ve had to learn,” Maxwell said. “Wanting things to happen very quickly has been the way I have gone about things. Learning patience has been something I have worked on with Warnie [Shane Warne] and a few of the other guys in the state set-up. I’ve done a whole lot of work. I’ve been in the nets relentlessly for the last 12 months.
“Shaping the ball has changed a lot, I’m starting to get the ball to drift away from the right-hander and spin back, which I wasn’t really doing. It was very straight [before]. I’m getting a lot more work on the ball, my pace and control is better as well. I’m hoping it’s going to be good enough and hopefully I can play in all three formats at some stage this year.”