Glenn Maxwell is hitting runs. Good for him. It’s about time he put all that talent to good use.
Funnily enough, a number of people have written to The Public Apology overnight, wondering whether we will be apologising for our recent article that highlighted Glenn Maxwell’s arrogance and complete obliviousness to test match values.
To refresh your memory, the article in question referred to a series of quotes that Maxwell made after the second test against Pakistan in the UAE.
“[The selectors] back me to play that reverse sweep no matter what the situation of the game. They understand for me that it’s no different from a cover drive for any other batter. They have instilled confidence in me to play that shot and they have seen it come off time and again. They accept the fact that for me it’s a normal shot, it’s no different from someone else getting beaten in defence. My best form of defence is attack anyway, so they would much rather me go out playing my natural game than defending and getting caught at bat pad,” Maxwell said.
However, I must clarify something that is already quite obvious: the piece I wrote regarding Maxwell had nothing to do with his talent. It also had nothing to do with his prowess in the short forms of the game. He can hit balls hard and far. And that’s good.
It had everything to do with his selection in test match cricket (at number 3), and his complete disregard for “batting time”.
As such, The Public Apology will not be issuing a public apology to Glenn Maxwell just because he’s now struck a bit of form.
Nothing frustrates viewers more than wasted talent. Maxwell has all the shots – and he clearly wants you to know that – but there are still valid question marks over his application, mental strength and technique.
Australia obviously loves a Big Show. Whether it’s the Sydney Olympics, the Vivid Festival or Future Music, we are easily seduced by the big, the brash and the bold. The World Cup is a Big Show. T20 Cricket is a Big Show. And therefore Maxwell’s brand of explosive cricket is on-brand in these scenarios.
But test cricket is not a Big Show. Test cricket is pure and wholesome. Test cricket is a nine-month exhibition at the Melbourne Museum celebrating Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs.
So here’s the deal: TPA will offer a sincere public apology to Glenn Maxwell once he has scored a test match century in a situation where it is needed.
We might even extend this olive branch to a situation in this World Cup, where he is forced to display conventional test match-esque values (patience, defence, application, strategy) in digging Australia out of a hole. A gritty 47 off 65 in a difficult run chase against South Africa, perhaps.
But until then, there will be no apology.
By Dave Edwards