By Aaron Callaghan
This opinion piece is uneditied - If you want to volunteer as editor-at-large to The Unsportsmen, get in contact.
Surely one can look past a reverse sweep or two when Australia is 4 for 40 on the first day?
The punters especially those with Victoria blood want Glen Maxwell back in the test team in the worst way. Pining for the classy and inventive middle order batsman (read: Number 7) to be restored into the struggling middle order.
The Selectors have chosen to seemingly put Maxwell's test career on hold following on from poor scoring outputs on recent sub-continent tours, perhaps Maxwell expedited his own time in purgatory by the manner of which he was dismissed - what the punters would at the time call 'dumb shots' and they, the punters had a point.
That poses the question does absence make the heart grow fonder?
That is to say, because of the Maxwell snubbing combined with our middle order failures, are we hoping to instill a false prophet? Will the viewers again be blessed with 'dumb shots' when Australia are invariably amidst a batting collapse.
Test batsmen are picked on numbers - oh and whoever has potential - oh and whoever looks good in scoring a shield 80-odd in October. So let's look at Maxwell's numbers;
- 2017/18 shield season 707 runs at 50.50
- 2018/19 shield season 126 runs at 42.00
Cherry picking a few important numbers paints a rosy picture of Maxwell and if he had chosen to spend an Australian winter facing the fiery Duke ball in England, we may have seen Maxwell at 6 fending off Jasprit Bumrah before filling his boots against a Sri Lankan team which conjures memories of their 1980's teams.
The equation is simple - if you think Maxwell is any worse than our current middle order you're surely mistaken. Put him in the team, all three formats and manage or mentor him into being the player he can be.
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