ABU DHABI: Australian batsman Glenn Maxwell is eagerly looking forward to taking on Pakistan in the three-match Twenty20 series starting in the UAE tomorrow.
“We are looking forward to the challenge. We had a good T20 tri-series against Pakistan and Zimbabwe [earlier this year]. Unfortunately, Pakistan got the better of us in the final. Hopefully, we can improve our performance by one level and win the tournament,” Maxwell said.
Right-handed Maxwell is well aware of the threat posed by Pakistan, who top the ICC Twenty20 rankings.
“Pakistan are obviously a very strong unit and have played some really good T20 cricket over the last couple of years to get themselves to the world No. 1 spot,” he said. “We’ll have our work cut out. Guys like Fakhar Zaman has been outstanding, especially in that final [of Zimbabwe T20 tri-series]. They don’t rely on one specific bowler, they have got a good unit that works together. So we’ll have to be at our A game to beat them,” Gulf News quoted Maxwell as saying.
The opening game of the three-match series will be played in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday followed by the business end at the Dubai International Stadium in Dubai.
Maxwell said he has fond memories of the place during the series against Pakistan in 2014. In the second ODI his 76 had helped Australia chase down the target and earn the man-of-the-match award.
“The grounds here [in the UAE]are beautiful. I have been lucky enough to have some success in Dubai. There was a one-day game that we played in 2014, I was able to score some runs and take some wickets in the T20 as well. Hopefully, we can get a decent crowd and really entertain them,” said Maxwell, who averages nearly 33 at a staggering 160-plus strike rate in T20s.