The time Glenn Maxwell spent away from cricket last summer developing new “tools” to handle life on and off the field has helped him navigate the new world which has tested him like never before.
Maxwell stepped away from cricket early last summer before returning in the Big Bash, then to the national team and is in Sydney preparing for next Friday’s opening ODI against India.
The 32-year-old has been away from home since August, first for the series against England in which he scored his second one-day hundred in the final game, smashing seven sixes in his score of 108.
But Maxwell then endured a lean Indian Premier League, making just 108 runs in 11 innings and facing just 106 balls for Kings XI Punjab.
He didn’t manage to hit a single six in the tournament and Indian great Virender Sehwag said Maxwell, who earned $2.1 million, was a high-priced “cheerleader”.
Then there was 10 days, without training, in “limbo” in Dubai before the Australians all caught a charter flight home to Sydney for two weeks quarantine.
“In hindsight it was probably a pretty good time to go through something like that where I was able to put some groundwork in to deal with adversity,” Maxwell said on Friday.
“And this year has certainly been a massive test, to put some of my learnings to use and help other people through that and be a shoulder for other people to lean on.
“That’s something I didn’t expect last year but to be able to able to help people through tough times and be able to get myself through those tough times has been key as well.”
Maxwell, who won’t even see the locally based members of the limited overs squad until the day before next Friday’s first game, said he was hitting the ball “fine” in the IPL despite his lean trot.
“I just wasn’t getting much of a crack. That can happen,” he said.
“A lot of the time it was when I was coming in and trying to hit everything over the rope and I just couldn’t time the thing.
“I came from arguably one of th ebets innings I have ever played din my career (in England) to not being able to clear gthe ropes. I don’t take too much out of that.
“With what I went through last year I think I’m better equipped at dealing with those sorts of things now.
“And looking at the bigger picture, my role within the side, trying to put the IPL side and look at what I need to do to get ready for every game so when the time comes, and when it’s needed I can perform really well.”
Maxwell said it was “unlikely” he would need to time out of any of the cricket bubbles he will love in this year, with a Big Bash bubble to follow his stay with the Australian team.
He said his fiance, Vini, had been a “star” and would join him in the bubble next week to ease the pain of being away from home.