Glenn Maxwell has been recalled to the Australian one-day cricket team for the tour of India after missing early four months of cricket due to a freak injury. Selectors signalled that they had an eye on this year's World Cup when picking the squad for the three-match series, with Maxwell and Mitchell Marsh both fit again and named after injury-plagued summers.
Maxwell only just returned to Sheffield Shield cricket after having his dreams dashed of ending a near six-year absence from Test level by playing in India when he suffered a freak broken leg suffered at a friend's birthday in November. The 34-year-old made his return this week, but was dealt a fresh blow on Tuesday when he was struck on the wrist while fielding at slip and had to leave the field.
However, Maxwell has appeared to recover from the knock and will be available for the short format tour after the Test matches. While he is still sitting out one-day domestic matches due to its intensity he is confident he will be fit to play in the first ODI in Mumbai on March 17.
"I always said I was building to that one-day series, it was always in my mind," Maxwell said. "Now that I am closer to that workload I need to be at, it's about trying to maintain that, get the pace back up, and in a couple of weeks time I will be 100 per cent."
Maxwell will also return to bowling in club cricket this week for Fitzroy Doncaster, before featuring in Victoria's next Sheffield Shield match against Victoria from March 2. A firing Maxwell at the World Cup would be a bonus given his experience playing in Asia and his versatility with bat, ball and in the field.
Marsh will prove his fitness by playing in the next two one-day matches for Western Australia before travelling to India. The powerful allrounder needed surgery three months ago to fix his troublesome left ankle and has not played a competitive game since November 22.
Jhye Richardson makes last ditch bolt
Another former star returning to fitness is fast bowler Jhye Richardson. The quick has also been included after struggling with a hamstring injury during the Perth Scorchers' run to the BBL title. Richardson last played an ODI for Australia during the tour of Sri Lanka in June.
Australia has been dealing with adversity in the current Border-Gavaskar Test series where they trail 2-0 to India. David Warner was sent home after fracturing his elbow, but his form has sparked concerns over his Test future.
Josh Hazlewood has been sent home after failing to recover from an injury that ruled him out of the first two Test matches and won't return for the ODIs. While captain Pat Cummins returned to Sydney after the second Test due to a serious family illness, but the star fast bowler is expected to arrive back in India by the weekend.
Australia chairman of selectors George Bailey said the players included after coming back from injury could play in important role in the coming months. "With the World Cup just over seven months away, these matches in India are an important step in our preparation," Bailey said.
"Glenn, Mitchell and Jhye are all important players in what we think the squad might look like come October." Bailey said it was unfortuante for Hazlewood to miss the series, but it was important he healed before the Ashes in a few months.
"It would be great for Josh to be part of this series but we have taken a conservative view ahead of a very important winter in England of which he will be an integral part," Bailey said.
But David Warner (elbow) and Ashton Agar (form) will return to India in March after flying home this week for the ODI serries. After the first clash in Mumbai, Australia will face India in Vizag (March 19) and Chennai (March 22).
Australia ODI squad: Pat Cummins (capt), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Cameron Green, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitch Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa.
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