Brad Hodge upset with Glenn Maxwell’s omission for Pakistan Tests

Hodge, though, did not criticise the selectors for overlooking Maxwell and said despite the absence of Smith and Warner, it’s a difficult task to fill the spots.

Brad Hodge
Brad Hodge. (Photo by Morne DeKlerk – CA/Cricket Australia/Getty Images)

Australia’s decision to overlook batting all-rounder Glenn Maxwell for the upcoming two-Test series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has shocked many former Baggy Greens. The Australians, led by wicketkeeper Tim Paine, will also play three T20Is besides the Test series in October. Australia last played Pakistan in a triangular series in Zimbabwe where they lost in the final to the Asian side.

Maxwell though hasn’t played much of Test cricket but perhaps the absence of two premier batsmen in the Australian side in the forms of Steve Smith and David Warner has made his exclusion look surprising. In seven Tests since making his debut in 2013, the left-hand batsman has scored 339 runs at an average of 26.07 with one century. He has also picked eight wickets in the longest format. Maxwell has been a more effective player in the limited formats, scoring 2,181 runs in 84 ODIs and 660 runs 49 T20Is. He also has 69 wickets in the ODIs and T20Is combined.

Maxwell’s omission has particularly disappointed former batsman Brad Hodge. In an interview with Macquarie Sports Radio, Sydney, the 43-year-old said: “It is disappointing … for Maxwell to be out of the side. Unfortunately for Maxi, he probably hasn’t been given an extended run or a great opportunity.”

“He’s a cricketer you want in your side. He bats, bowls and fields and he’s a good team man. Maxwell’s off-breaks could have come handy on the typically dry UAE pitches.”

Hodge himself was unlucky in Tests

Hodge’s deep sympathy for Maxwell perhaps emanated from the fact that he too had found himself at the receiving end in Tests. The Victorian could play just six Tests in his nine-year career but in those six, he scored 503 runs at an average of almost 56. He had a series against South Africa early in his career in which he scored 308 runs at an average of 77 and he hit an unbeaten double hundred in Perth. Hodge could not get to play his seventh Test perhaps because his playing days coincided with Australia’s best-ever team since ‘The Invincibles’.

Hodge, though, did not criticise the selectors for overlooking Maxwell and said despite the absence of Smith and Warner, it’s a difficult task to fill the spots.

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