Magic Maxi fuelled by best mate

Barnstorming Aussie batsman Glenn Maxwell hailed the “clarity” he was given from one-day captain Aaron Finch during training sessions in lockdown as key to his history-making Manchester innings which took down England.

Maxwell was named man of the match and man of the series after belting his second ODI century and, with fellow century maker Alex Carey, rescuing Australia from 5-73 to help the tourists score a famous victory.

A lusty 11 runs off just three balls from Mitchell Starc pushed the Aussies past England’s total 7-302 after Maxwell and Carey put on a record 212-run partnership, sealing a 2-1 series win.

It was England’s first ODI series loss at home for five years.

The partnership between Maxwell and Carey was a sixth-wicket record for Australia in ODIs, and the second biggest in one-day history.

Batting at number seven in his new role as the “finisher” for the Aussie team, Maxwell became the fastest ever player to reach 3000 runs, finishing with 108 off just 90 balls.

The right-hander said while training in lockdown in Melbourne, Finch gave Maxwell the ammunition he needed to deliver in his return to international cricket, having taken a break from the game last summer.

“I was lucky that I was able to train with Finchy during lockdown and we were able to talk about my role and talk about certain things and I had so much clarity on what he expected from me,” Maxwell said.

“I think that gave me good clarity out there, I was able to take the game on with the clarity he gave me before the tournament started and ride on that momentum and knowing I had the backing of him was awesome.

“I always feel like I have batted better for Australia when we have been in a bit of trouble. To be able to get us through that and to a position we could win the game was really pleasing.”

Glenn Maxwell and Alex Carey of Australia pose with the Royal London One Day Series trophy (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images for ECB)Source:Getty Images

Maxwell said he thought he had nothing to lose when he walked to the wicket to join Carey after Marnus Labuschagne was run out in the 17th over.

“I was thinking we haven’t got much to lose so I had a bit of freedom to try and take the bowling on and put some pressure on them,” he said.

“I suppose coming in 5-73 it’s probably hit or bust at that stage. Once we started to build that partnership, took a couple of risks early and got away with them, having heaps of trust in my own technique and my partner at the other end … for that to grow in to a really big partnership was pretty awesome.”

Maxwell paid tribute to Carey who registered his maiden ODI century in his 39th game and went past 1000 runs in the process.

“I really enjoyed the partnership, seeing him get his first ODI hundred is pretty nice, he works so damn hard,” Maxwell said.

“He’s one of the great guys to be around, I see him every day, he makes me smile. To see him get the rewards at the other end was extremely special and to beat the number one team on their home soil was awesome.”

Maxwell said it was “massive” to take down the World Cup winners who have already played two Test series and two white-ball series this summer.

For the Aussies, they were first up after a winter in lockdown which for Maxwell didn’t include facing bowlers on turf until he got to the UK.

“They are a pretty formidable team and to take them down on their home soil, when they have been playing some consistent cricket, and for us to start our summer off after a long time in lockdown with a series win was pretty incredible for this group,” he said.

“We’ve worked so hard … to get ourselves up to take on the world’s best.”

Maxwell and several teammates will now head to the UAE for the Indian Premier League before returning to Australia for the home summer.

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