Gautam Gambhir has come down hard on misfiring Kings XI Punjab star Glenn Maxwell and has claimed that his numbers in the IPL suggest that franchises might in fact be incorrectly overvaluing him. After scores of 1, 5 and 13* in his first 3 games, Maxwell scored an 18-ball 11 on Thursday.
After a Man of the Tournament performance in the England ODIs, there was considerable hype surrounding Glenn Maxwell’s reunion with Kings XI Punjab, particularly thanks to the added UAE factor. Purchased for a whopping 10.75 crore in the auction, Maxwell failed to get going in each of the first three games of this season, but it was his performance on Thursday versus Mumbai Indians, where his team needed him to get going badly, that left a bitter taste on the viewers. With Punjab chasing 192, Maxwell, walking in at 60/3, struggled perennially, before being dismissed for an appalling 18-ball 11.
Having averaged a hideous 18 in the IPL since his heroics in 2014, there is a perception that Maxwell might, in fact, be a tad overrated and overvalued in the IPL and speaking post KXIP’s defeat versus MI, Gautam Gambhir suggested the same. Gambhir noted that Maxwell has had only 1 good IPL season in his entire career and claimed that he is in no way an out-and-out match-winner like an Andre Russell or an AB de Villiers.
“Glenn Maxwell has had only one decent IPL in the last 6-7 years. For the amount of money he has been bought for, he has been too hot and cold. He looks completely out of sorts. Since he’s arrived in the IPL, he doesn’t look like the player he was against England,” Gambhir said on ESPNCricinfo’s ‘Time-out’.
“Not sure if it has to do with wickets (conditions) or money pressure but if you look at Maxwell’s performance in the IPL over an extended period of time, it has been very hot and cold. Franchises need to re-think whether Glenn Maxwell actually is the match-winner they think he is. Is he an Andre Russell or an AB de Villiers who can win your 3-4 games single-handedly? I doubt big time.”
Maxwell, who amassed 552 runs in the 2014 season of the IPL, has crossed the 200-run barrier just once since then, and Gambhir claimed how he would rather invest on someone like a Jonny Bairstow or Kane Williamson, who are more reliable commodities. The former Indian batsman was critical of Maxwell’s inconsistency and stated that the Australian cannot continue flopping at the expense of Chris Gayle, who is currently warming the bench.
“As a batsman, I will always have a Jonny Bairstow or a Kane Williamson over Maxwell. They are more consistent, more ensured and you know even their bad season would be around 300-350 runs. But Maxwell can have a 600-run season, but at the same time, he can have a 150-run season as well. So do you wanna have a player who is so hot and cold? I don’t think so. When someone like a Chris Gayle is sitting on the bench, you need to deliver much more,” Gambhir opined.
Meanwhile, former Sunrisers Hyderabad coach Tom Moody weighed in on the Maxwell conundrum and suggested that the pressure of the price tag might have gotten the better of the Victorian, who is currently averaging 10.00 in IPL 2020.
“I can’t explain it. I think he has trouble coming to terms with playing with pressure of price-tag on his head. We’re not seeing the same Maxwell that we’re used to seeing in the Big Bash or for Australia. It’s a very condensed and a high-pressure environment in the IPL, and there is also great scrutiny. Your performances are scrutinized to great detail. Maybe that is just becoming a little bit too overwhelming for him,” Tom Moody said on the same show.