Glenn Maxwell will miss Australia's crunch clash with England at the Cricket World Cup after he was concussed in a golf buggy mishap on Wednesday. The Aussie all-rounder fell off the back of a golf cart that was transporting players back to the team bus after a round in India, leaving him with a concussion.
He is under now concussion protocols for up to eight days after a second freak accident in the past 12 months. In November last year he broke his leg when he slipped while pretending to chase a friend at a birthday party.
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Despite the unfortunate mishap, Australia's coach Andrew McDonald said he only expects Maxwell to miss one game. "He's doing fine, he'll start some light exercises today and we feel as though it will be a reasonably straightforward return to play protocol," McDonald told reporters in Bengaluru.
"I suppose the fortunate part was there was no other injury sustained which could have been a lot worse than it is. It rattled everyone, to be fair, once it came to the conclusion there was a concussion and he was going to miss a game.
"There was nothing untoward in the behaviour throughout the day, it was a clear-cut accident. Unfortunately it has compromised what we are doing as a team."
The Aussies are currently sitting fourth on the table and in the box seat to qualify for the semi-finals ahead of their remaining games against England, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. Maxwell's mishap comes at the worst possible time for the swashbuckling all-rounder, who had hit top form in the last two games at the World Cup.
He smacked the fastest century in World Cup history (40 balls) against the Netherlands on October 24, before blasting 41 from 24 deliveries in Australia's five-run win against New Zealand last Saturday. His absence will leave Pat Cummins without a genuine second spinning option against England, with Maxwell serving as another slow bowler with Adam Zampa.
McDonald said Travis Head or Marnus Labuschange could be called on to bowl. "We'll be looking at Travis to take some pace out of the game (with the ball) and we've also got Marnus who can do some spinning duties," he said.
"(Labuschagne) has been working on his off-spin along with his leg-spin. We feel like we've got enough options to take the pace out of the game should the surface require that."
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Marcus Stoinis will almost certainly return from a calf injury to replace Maxwell, easing pressure on middle-order batter Labuschagne to retain his place. Labuschagne had been tipped to be replaced by Stoinis for the fixture against England, but will now hold his spot for another game at least.
"There's no doubt it leaves us a fraction exposed at the back end in terms of how Glenn has been performing," McDonald said. "But Marcus Stoinis does become available, all things going well at training today."
The Aussies have made some incredible starts to their batting innings at the World Cup, but with Labuschagne and Steve Smith in the middle order they haven't been able to keep up the high scoring rate. Many have been calling for one of Smith or Labuschagne to make way, with both more suited to the red-ball game than limited overs cricket.
Not again!! 😂
— Ajitdeep (@CHAIHOLIC_) November 1, 2023
Oh 😯 not very good news for Australia 🦘
— Anupama Singh (@anupamaasingh) November 1, 2023
this worldcup is cursed
— Abdullah Orakzaiii (@AbdullahOrkzy23) November 1, 2023
Get well soon after World Cup.
— Shubham 𝕏 (@DankShubhum) November 1, 2023
Why playing stupidd games in the middle or world cup? Just focus on cricket and avoid injuries.
— Waѕiyullah Budye (@WasiyullahB) November 1, 2023
Last year he broke his leg at a birthday party & missed nearly the whole season. This year falls of a golf cart before an important WC game. Freak!
— Sushant Chaturvedi (@ShawshankOne) November 1, 2023
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