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Maxwell takes break from cricket due to ‘difficulties with regards to his mental health’

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

Australia all-rounder Glenn Maxwell has decided to take a break from cricket, owing to mental health difficulties, as confirmed by team psychologist Dr Michael Lloyd in a Cricket Australia release on Thursday, October 31.

Maxwell has been replaced by left-hander D’Arcy Short for the third and final T20I against Sri Lanka, to be played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Friday, November 1.

“Glenn Maxwell has been experiencing some difficulties with regards to his mental health. As a result, he will spend a short time away from the game,” Lloyd said. “Glenn was proactive in identifying these issues and engaging with support staff.”

Maxwell was at his destructive best in the first T20I in Adelaide, scoring 62 off just 28 balls, featuring seven fours and three sixes. He didn’t get a chance to bat in the following game in Brisbane, as Australia lost just one wicket in the chase. He contributed on the field too, affecting a run-out in each of those games.

But the performances, and his seemingly positive demeanour, were a “mask”, according to coach Justin Langer. “We saw how he fielded again yesterday, but he had to put on a mask,” Langer told reporters in Melbourne.

“People in public positions often have to put on masks. That’s the mask he puts on. That’s his armour, his energy and the way he plays. He’s the great entertainer, but underneath the mask, I could just sense it.

“You know how you can just sense with people, when they’re not quite right. I just asked him the day before the Adelaide game, and that’s when he said, ‘Nah, I probably need to have a little bit of a chat’.”

“The well-being of our players and staff is paramount. Glenn has our full support,” Ben Oliver, the executive general manager of Australia’s national teams, said. “Cricket Australia will work collaboratively with Cricket Victoria’s support staff to ensure Glenn’s well-being and his reintegration into the game. We ask that everyone gives Glenn and his family and friends space; and respects their privacy at this time.

“He’s a special player and an important part of the Australian cricket family. We hope to see him back in the team during the summer. It’s important we look after Glenn and all our players.”

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