Former batsman Mark Waugh has publicly challenged Australia’s decision to omit all-rounder Glenn Maxwell from the squad for the ongoing Test series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates.
Waugh, who recently resigned as a national selector, all but insisted Maxwell should be in a squad minus the services of batsmen David Warner, Steven Smith and Cameron Bancroft.
Warner, Smith and Bancroft are currently serving Cricket Australia-imposed bans from international cricket, after admitting to ball-tampering during the Test series against South Africa earlier this year.
‘It’s tough because we’ve lost our two best batsmen, haven’t we? And three counting Bancroft, so there’s only a certain pool of players that are good enough to play Test cricket,’ said Waugh.
An Australian batting order lined with debutants Aaron Finch, Travis Head and Marnus Labuschagne lost six wickets to spin in the first innings of the series opener in Dubai.
‘It’s not the time to panic, I don’t think there are many players there that would make a big difference – the only player I would have picked is Maxwell, that’s not there,’ added Waugh.
‘I think he’s a guy with ability, can change the game, he’s a good player of spin, he can actually take the attack to the bowling side. So that’s the only guy I would have that’s not there, and maybe you can bring back Matt Renshaw for the second Test. But all the other guys? That’s about the best we’ve got at the moment.’
Abu Dhabi will host the second and final Test.