Aussie big-hitter Maxwell confident of beating defending champions comfortably on Thursday just like they did in the Test and tri-series
Sydney: Australia’s big-hitting lower middle-order batsman Glenn Maxwell is confident that the hosts will not just beat India in Thursday’s second semi-final of the World Cup, but will also dominate the proceedings just like they did in the Test and tri-series that preceded the prestigious quadrennial tournament.
Glenn Maxwell en route his unbeaten 29-ball 44 against Pakistan at Adelaide on Friday. PIC/Getty Images
“I think we targeted them (India) pretty well (in the Tests and tri-series). They haven’t won a game against us all summer. Hopefully, we can make the most of that. That’s pretty clear in their memory. We’ve been dominant in the ODI format. We’ll look to continue that,” Maxwell told reporters after he arrived on Saturday at Sydney Domestic Airport’s Qantas terminal with some of the members of the Australian team that beat Pakistan by six wickets the previous night in Adelaide. India lost the four-Test series 0-2 to the Australians and then finished winless in the tri-series that also included England.
Maxwell has been in pretty good form throughout the tournament, having scores of 66 (vs England), 88 (vs Afghanistan), 102 (vs Sri Lanka), and 44 not out against Pakistan at the Adelaide Oval on Friday.
Early scare vs Pakistan
Maxwell, however, admitted that there were some jitters in the Australia camp when they were reduced to 59-3 at one stage with Pakistan pacer Wahab Riaz subjecting Shane Watson to some very challenging chin music. “It was a pretty incredible win. The boys played outstanding cricket. (But) it was a little bit uncomfortable at times, but when you look at the overall result with six wickets and 90-odd balls left, it is a very comfortable win. We controlled the momentum of the game throughout though it was an unbelievable spell from Wahab Riaz. Full credit to him, that was pretty incredible,” said the 26-year-old Victorian, who has also taken five wickets so far in the tournament with his off-spinners.
Maxwell’s tennis-style shot against Riaz, where he backed off only for the bowler to chase him with a short one which the batsmen merely tucked away square of the wicket like a tennis forehand, has been a point of discussion on social media since Friday.
The batsman surprisingly revealed that he’s practiced the shot previously. “I have practiced that. You spend most of your net sessions facing Mitchell Johnson, (Mitchell) Starc, (Pat) Cummins and (Josh) Hazlewood, so you have to find ways of avoiding them or hit them. I have been doing my best to try and practice that. I have practiced that shot in the nets,” he said as the scribes smiled away.