Maxwell feeling the pressure
All-rounder Glenn Maxwell is feeling the pressure as his position in Australia's one-day set-up comes under question.
The 24-year-old's meagre return of eight and five in his opening two innings in Australia's five-match ODI series with Sri Lanka have been compounded by his failure to take a wicket in six ODI games for Australia.
Big Bash success story Aaron Finch, Usman Khawaja, all-rounder Steve Smith and paceman Ben Cutting were dropped from the 12-man squad following Australia's humbling eight-wicket loss in the second ODI, but Maxwell will make the trip for the third and fourth games of the tied series in Brisbane in Sydney.
And with Moises Henriques returning to the set-up after a three-year exile to provide competition for the all-rounder spot along with mainstays Michael Clarke, David Warner and Matthew Wade, Maxwell is well aware of the fickle nature of his position.
"I think every game you play for Australia you feel the pressure to perform," he said.
"I still remember my first game only five months ago you know that you could only get one or two chances to play for Australia.
"You've just got to take it with both hands and make the most of it."
Khawaja was dropped after making just three in Melbourne, while Finch will return to the Melbourne Renegades for their Big Bash semi-final with the Brisbane Heat following his lone failure with the bat in the second ODI in Adelaide.
The 26-year-old made way for Warner while Maxwell was spared despite two failed innings and no success with the ball, but the all-rounder said Finch's demotion was simply a case of too many quality players being available.
"I'm not really sure (if Finch should have been dropped)," Maxwell said. "He's played very well this domestic season, he's in great knick but I think you look at the guys that are coming back into the side and who do you leave out?"
"Hughesy (Phil Hughes) got a hundred in the first game and he's been good all season and Warner, Wade and Clarke come back into the squad so it's hard to squeeze 15 players into 12."
Friday's clash in Brisbane will likely shape the series, tied 1-1, with Maxwell admitting there can be no excuses for another poor display following Australia's 170 all out in the first innings on Sunday.
"It's very important, we've got the three big guys back - Warner, Wade and Clarke - so good to have those guys back in the team and no excuses this time," he said.
"The 'Gabba is a good wicket and (we'll) hopefully have good conditions up there.
"Obviously we were pretty disappointed (after Adelaide), we basically failed on all three counts - our batting, bowling and fielding was not up to standard and we know that so we're going to have to bounce back pretty quickly again."
On a personal note, Maxwell feels his first wicket is just around the corner if he can make the most of the conditions in Brisbane.
"I felt like I've been bowling okay, I just haven't really been bowling at the right time during partnerships, I've been coming in when they've been consolidating their partnership or when there wasn't a whole lot of pressure.
"The other night I came on and they were 30 runs away from winning.
"Any time you come and you're a spinner on a seaming wicket that's not a good time come on, especially when you've only got 170 on the board and that's the batters' fault."