INTERVIEW: Maxwell looking forward to Lancashire stint
Find out what Glenn Maxwell has said ahead of his arrival
Glenn Maxwell’s name is already etched into Roses T20 folklore having hoisted the very first ball of the match over cover for six with a switch hit whilst playing for Yorkshire in 2015. Steven Croft, the bowler at the time, will probably want to forget it, but it was certainly one of those ‘Wow’ moments Lancashire’s new Australian batting all-rounder is famous for.
Superstar Maxwell has signed an overseas deal for the Red Rose to play all forms of the game through the forthcoming summer having already represented Hampshire, Surrey and Yorkshire since 2012.
Despite being 30-years-old and, by his own admission, a maturing and more responsible player with the bat, the affable Melburnian has not lost the power which has cricket lovers worldwide on the edge of their seats.
“I haven’t spoken to him about it since,” laughed Maxwell, a winner of the Blast with Hampshire in 2012.
“I was actually lucky enough to play against him for Hampshire in a one-day game the previous season. I was out there for a while and was able to get a pretty decent read on him.
“In that Roses game, I got a good sighter of what he was going to bowl before he ran up, so I backed myself and, luckily enough, got it pretty crisply.”
It would have been no surprise to see Maxwell play such a shot in the latter stages of the innings, even a few overs into the powerplay. But the very first ball of the match?!
“The field probably dictated it for me,” Maxwell continued. “He had the whole off-side field up and was holding it as a split finger knuckle ball.
“I knew it was going to wobble out pretty straight and had a good idea of what line it was going to be. He couldn’t afford to give me any room outside off because it would have been pretty simple to hit over the in-field.”
That shot was actually recently voted by Yorkshire fans as one of their most memorable Roses T20 moments, beaten by the boundary relay catch between Adam Lyth and Aaron Finch at long-off to get rid of Tom Smith at Emirates Old Trafford in 2014. Maxwell laughs again and admits: “That was pretty disappointing.
“I remember copping my fair share of abuse in those matches when I played for Yorkshire.
“They’re amazing games to be a part of. I suppose not quite understanding the significance before you play, you certainly understand it afterwards. They’re always exciting, and both teams are desperate to win. Fingers crossed, we can get the job done this year.”
Maxwell has agreed to chat about his forthcoming stint with Lancashire during some downtime on Australia’s ongoing limited overs tour of India.
We catch up just two days after, batting at number four, he smashed a sensational 113 not out off 55 balls in a T20 International at Bangalore to help chase down a score of 191 with two balls to spare. He hit seven fours and nine sixes to help seal a 2-0 series win. In the first game, he had led the way with a more measured 56.
“It was a pretty amazing start to a tour really!” he said.
“I always set expectations before I come overseas for a tour, and it was nice to have exceeded them. To get the opportunity to bat for as long as I did in both the games was nice. It doesn’t always happen when you bat in the middle order in a T20.
“To finish a T20 series with 100 not out and to hit the winning runs was pretty special. It was even more special that it was against India in India. It’s a tough place to come and play. Not many touring teams have success here.”
On the same day - last Wednesday - as Maxwell went berserk against Virat Kohli and co, Jos Buttler was doing likewise against the West Indies in a one-day international in Grenada with 150 off 77 balls and Liam Livingstone was also scoring runs in the Pakistan Super League. He hit 56 off 31 for Karachi Kings in a T20 defeat in Dubai.
The prospect of seeing those three bat together in a Lightning shirt this summer is enough, as Maxwell says, “a mouthwatering proposition”.
He continued: “I have certainly been keeping track of the Lancashire boys and how they’re going in certain tours or competitions. To see Jos striking them like that, it’s a pretty mouthwatering proposition for Lancashire’s fans this season.
“Liam is a powerful player, and he’s hopefully going to have another standout season. If he keeps playing like is doing, there’s probably an England call-up at some stage. He’s such a powerful player and an inventive one, and he’s someone I’m looking forward to batting with.”
No joke, Maxwell arrives in Manchester on April 1 ahead of his debut in the Royal London one-day Cup. He will then link up with Australia for the World Cup, starting at the end of May, before returning to Lancashire duty in mid-July and playing T20 and some Championship cricket through until the end of the season.
All those connected with Lancashire will certainly hope he continues his current form having also just finished a hugely encouraging Big Bash with the Melbourne Stars, who were beaten finalists against cross town rivals Melbourne Renegades last month.
Maxwell scored 331 runs from 13 matches and captained the Stars for the first time.
He added: “Having that responsibility for my own game and ownership of the team really helped me grow as a player. I really thrived on that (the captaincy).
“It’s something that perhaps hasn’t happened so much over my career, having those leadership roles, but it was nice to make the best of the first opportunity I had in Australia. We played really well in the tournament and got ourselves into the final. Unfortunately, we didn’t win it. But, going forwards, we’re going to be a force to be reckoned with.”
If Maxwell can Star in red this summer, then the Lightning too will be a force to be reckoned with in the Blast.
Vitality Blast tickets on sale now
Tickets are on sale NOW for all 2019 Vitality Blast fixtures at Emirates Old Trafford, you can get tickets here.
The explosive Vitality Blast is back this summer, with non-stop entertainment from start to finish at Emirates Old Trafford.
Soak up three-hours of thrilling T20 cricket, with huge sixes and big cheers from the roaring crowd…plus great music and fun for the whole family.
Don't forget tickets for the biggest fixture in domestic cricket are also on sale, Lancashire Lightning v Yorkshire Vikings, get your Roses Match ticket here. Fancy saving up to 20% on your T20 tickets? You can secure your seat for all home games with a Season Ticket from just £65 – that’s less than £10 per game!