Australia allrounder Glenn Maxwell has been named in the Australia ODI and T20I squad for the South Africa tour that begins later this month. At the end of last year, Maxwell had taken an indefinite break from international cricket following mental health difficulties and hasn’t played for Australia ever since.
ODI squad: Aaron Finch (c), Ashton Agar, Alex Carey (vc), Pat Cummins (vc), Josh Hazlewood, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa
T20I squad: Aaron Finch (c), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey (vc), Pat Cummins (vc), Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa
However, the 31-year-old led Melbourne Stars in the Big Bash League and was also named by Cricket Australia as the captain of the team of the tournament. Maxwell had a fantastic tournament with both bat and ball, scoring 389 runs and picking up eight wickets. He has potentially two more matches now to add to that tally.
“It is fantastic to have Glenn back in both squads given his brilliant form in the middle order for the Stars along with his results with the ball,” National Selector Trevor Hohns said: “Glenn was one of the first picked in the most recent T20 team at the start of the summer, prior to his break from the game.”
While Ashton Turner makes way for Maxwell from the squad toured India recently, the selectors have also included wicketkeeper-batsman Matthew Wade and allrounder Mitchell Marsh in place of Peter Handscomb and D’Arcy Short in the 14-man squad. Marsh also returns to the T20I squad alongside pacers Sean Abbott and Jhye Richardson.
Marsh finished as Perth Scorchers’ leading run-getter with 382 runs at a strike-rate of 145 whereas Wade managed to impress in white-ball cricket as well, scoring heavily for Hobart Hurricanes while juggling between international duties. Richardson, who hasn’t featured for Australia since the shoulder injury he sustained last year that caused him to miss the World Cup, gets an opportunity in the T20I setup after impressing with the ball for Scorchers.
“He (Marsh) has been in tremendous touch with the bat for the Scorchers since his return from injury and is now back bowling well. His performances warranted inclusion in the area he operates as a powerful middle order batsman and handy bowler,” Hohns explained. “Jhye Richardson also returns to the T20 side from injury with his performances demanding inclusion. He is a terrific young player who has been sensational in all forms of the game; and is an extremely strong fieldsman.
“Matthew Wade is also in red hot form with the bat. He is a very strong fielder; and a great person to have in any team. He can also substitute as wicketkeeper if required.”
Allrounder Marcus Stoinis, who was named the BBL player of the tournament for topping the run charts, didn’t earn a spot, but will be the standby player for both the squads.
The tour will begin with a T20I on February 21 in Johannesburg followed by two more games in the same format before the three-match ODI series.
Pucovski included for 4-day game
Meanwhile, young batsman Will Pucovski has been named in the Australia A squad for the day-night four-day game against England Lions at the MCG. Pucovski suffered a concussion on Sunday while playing against England Lions and was ruled out of the remainder of the one-day series. However, the 22-year-old will be back in action for the first-class game that commences on February 22.
Moises Henriques, who has led Sydney Sixers to the BBL final, will captain the side that also has Test regulars James Pattinson and Usman Khawaja apart from the likes of Marcus Harris, Mitchell Swepson and Stoinis.
Australia A squad for 4-day game vs Lions: Moises Henriques, Jackson Bird, Marcus Harris, Josh Inglis, Usman Khawaja, Michael Neser, Kurtis Patterson, James Pattinson, Will Pucovski, Mark Steketee, Marcus Stoinis, Mitchell Swepson
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