Glenn Maxwell is all set to play first-class cricket for the first time in three years as the 33-year--old aims to push his case for Test selection, with four Tests in the subcontinent, against India, looming in early 2023. Maxwell, who has 7 Test caps to his name, stepped away from first-class cricket in 2019 in order to focus on the shorter formats, but the right-hander earned a shock recall earlier this year in Sri Lanka, being named as standby for Travis Head after the South Australian suffered an untimely injury.
As it turned out, Maxwell did not get a game in the two Tests in the Island Nation, but the 33-year-old has revealed that the mere fact of being around the Test squad has ‘reinvigorated and reminded myself of where I want to be’ and is hence focused on doing everything he can to add to his 7 caps.
In his own words, the Victorian is eyeing playing a couple of Shield games prior to the Big Bash League to dip his feet in the red-ball water again.
"It's exciting, I haven't played (first-class cricket) since 2019," Maxwell told cricket.com.au on Monday.
“I did actually have a look at the schedule properly yesterday and I think I'm going to be available for a couple of Shield games before the Big Bash.
"It's nice to have that to look forward to and potentially get some red-ball cricket finally.
"It's been a long time and having that taste of just being in the Test squad was so exciting and reinvigorated and reminded myself of where I want to be.
"It's something that I've made no secret about, that I really want to play Test cricket again and I'm just hoping by the end of the summer hopefully I can be somewhere around that Test squad."
Maxwell is unlikely to get a look in during the home summer against South Africa and West Indies, but the all-rounder, considered one of the better players of spin in the country, is expected to be in the mix for the four-Test series in India starting early next year. The Victorian, whose only Test century was scored in India five years ago, asserted that the subcontinent is a place where he feels ‘really comfortable’ as a batter.
"I've been there more times than my Indian wife, so I think I'm well accustomed to the area and well accustomed to the people," said Maxwell of the subcontinent nation.
"It's somewhere where I feel really comfortable, and I've played a lot of cricket over there.
"I know that if I can get that opportunity, I know that it's going to be something that feels comfortable for me and somewhere I know I can be successful."
Red-ball cricket aside, Maxwell is a part of the white-ball core that will be at the forefront of Australia’s defense of the T20 World Cup later this year in front of the home fans. The 33-year-old admitted that defending the title will be a huge ask, but attested that the players will certainly take inspiration from the triumphant campaign in 2015, where the Kangaroos won the 50-over World Cup in front of 90,000 fans at the MCG.
"The memories of 2015 come flooding back hosting a World Cup in your own backyard.
"Just the feeling around the squad and the feeling around Australia when we were travelling around trying to win a World Cup in front of our home fans was something that was so special.
"To be defending the title which we didn't have until 10 months ago is something really exciting for us and it's going to be a big challenge, especially with an added level of expectation now."