Glenn Maxwell hit out, and later lashed his side’s disappointing start to BBL07. Picture: Getty Images
Glenn Maxwell hit out, and later lashed his side’s disappointing start to BBL07. Picture: Getty Images

‘Putrid!’ Maxwell’s scathing attack on Stars

CRICKET: Glenn Maxwell said the "putrid" Melbourne Stars were not playing as a team and appeared headed towards the Big Bash League's wooden spoon in a scathing assessment of the club's winless start to the summer.

Despite top-scoring with 50 (39), Maxwell didn't spare himself from harsh criticism by labelling his innings "frustrating and embarrassing" after the nine-wicket loss to Brisbane Heat on Tuesday night.

The green team is 0-3 this summer and has now lost its past six matches, five of its past six at the MCG and its past five against the Heat.

Asked what had gone wrong to the pre-tournament fancy, Maxwell paused for eight seconds and then said: "I have no idea. I've got absolutely nothing".

The electrifying all-rounder then cut loose with a withering spray.

"The first game we didn't bowl well enough and didn't field well enough, (the) second game we didn't bat with any brains whatsoever and this game it all fell apart," Maxwell said.

"We have to turn it around, otherwise it's going to unravel pretty quickly."

Maxwell said the expanded tournament - this season swelled from eight group matches to 10 - gave the Stars some hope of fighting back.

 

"Mathematically we could still finish top. But the way we're going at the moment we're not looking like going anywhere but bottom because we're playing terrible cricket," Maxwell said.

"We're not probably playing together as a team. We haven't even got close to putting together a full game, which is what you need to do in T20 cricket.

"We were putrid today."

The Stars' biggest names have flopped this season with new captain John Hastings dropping Heat superstar Chris Lynn before he had scored on Tuesday night and recruit Ben Dunk scoring just 11 runs from three knocks as opener.

Lynn went on to blast an unbeaten 63 (46) and combined with 'Bash Brother' Brendon McCullum for a match-winning 101-run opening stand.

 

 

Chris Lynn hammers more runs for Brisbane Heat.
Chris Lynn hammers more runs for Brisbane Heat.

 

 

Asked if the Heat was simply too good with the ball, Maxwell said: "No. It was just putrid batting" after the Stars posted 7-141.

"You can almost doubt yourself and I certainly felt that when I went out to bat," Maxwell said.

"It took me far too long to get going. I cost us plenty out there because I just couldn't hit the ball.

"It was frustrating and pretty embarrassing to tell you the truth, to spend that much time out in the middle and not even really contribute to the match.

"I'll probably take responsibility for that batting performance. Normally your rock has to at least look like he's hitting the ball well so that the non-striker feels comfortable while you're at the crease."

"That's not good enough, it's as simple as that."

Maxwell entered at 2-55 and, despite wickets tumbling around him, guided the Stars past 120 runs before holing out with 12 balls left in the innings.

The international star was frustrated he failed to close out the innings.

 

Maxwell's blast follows coach Stephen Fleming saying players should be nursing bruised egos and Hastings admitting his team was "up against it" after the second loss.

Fleming lashed his team's attitude in the field after the first loss to Brisbane, labelling the performance "clumsy, nervous and apprehensive".

While Maxwell said he wasn't part of the selection committee, he predicted changes.

"We're not winning games of cricket and you can't just keep moseying along," he said.

Young spinner Liam Bowe played against the Heat, and dismissed McCullum, but Jackson Coleman and Seb Gotch have not been picked this season.

Maxwell said the Stars remained a united group and would not splinter.

"There's still plenty of hope, it's just frustrating to continually start seasons like this," he said.

The Stars were 0-3 after BBL04, 0-2 after BBL05 and 1-2 after BBL06.

They responded to reach the semi-finals every time.



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