Glenn Maxwell clarifies his comments on Virat Kohli's selfishness
Glenn Maxwell’s comment on how Indian batsmen chase personal milestones had already caused a stir before matters were fired up even more on Thursday, when Maxwell pointed out how Virat Kohli’s scoring rate had been a reason for India’s loss in the 4th ODI. He came out with a clarification on Friday, saying that he was shocked at how media reports were implying he had criticised Kohli.
Taken out of context... I also complimented him on how well he had played and got his team into a winning position https://t.co/wxIG1eJlD6— Glenn Maxwell (@Gmaxi_32) January 22, 2016
What Maxwell had said was that Kohli, like Rohit Sharma in the first 2 ODIs, had slowed down considerably as he approached his century in the 4th ODI, and the run rate could not recover from the sudden slump.
Everyone wants to play like Virat: Maxwell
In what may sound like a backtracking from the usually fearless maverick, Maxwell said, “I don't think anyone in the world is hitting the ball better than Virat at the moment. Everyone wants to play like Virat does.
“The way that he all but took the game away from us the other night in Canberra was something that we were pretty much powerless to stop. It took some really good bowling from our guys to change the momentum, and once we got a couple of quick breakthroughs all the responsibility was heaped on Virat given the inexperience of their middle and lower-order batters.
"But some of the reporting I've seen today makes it seem like I was personally attacking one of the best players in the game about the way he plays, which is completely untrue.
"Maintaining a constant scoring rate can be less straightforward batting first than when you're chasing and you know what the required rate has to be, and there have been times when batters just seem to have slowed a bit to make sure they reach those milestones.
"Sometimes that wins you games, and sometimes it doesn't but that was the only point I was trying to make.”
Australians have immense respect for Kohli: Maxwell
Maxwell also played down any suggestion that there was bad blood between the Australian team and Kohli. He also claimed to have a very good off-field relationship with the India Test captain, and that he had already had a talk with him about the issue before coming out with the clarification.
"As a team, we have enormous respect for him largely because he goes about his cricket in much the same way as we do. Plus he takes the opposition on and that always earns you huge respect from Australian players and fans.
"There's no doubt that during this ODI series everyone's enjoyed the way that he's taken on the role of aggressor, and the battles he's had with James Faulkner have been a real highlight. Off the field, he's really likeable, he's got a great personality and he's happy to show that.”
It is increasingly looking unlikely that Maxwell will play in the 5th ODI at Sydney, as he is struggling with a knee injury as well as a sore left hamstring. Even if he does not play in the final match, his contribution in a run of four very taxing matches in nine days have been second to none.