Dubai: Australia will aim for a clean sweep when they take on Pakistan in the fifth and final match of the series at the Dubai International Stadium on Sunday.
Glenn Maxwell top-scored with 98 runs for Australia in their exciting six-run win in the fourth match of the series on Friday. When Gulf News asked the man of the match if his team is now focused on recording a famous 5-0 win to make it eight victories in a row, following their three successive wins in India, Maxwell said: “It’s an exciting proposition for us. That’s all the motivation you need — to have a clean sweep in a foreign country after we haven’t had a lot of success over the last 12 months. It’d be great for this group to win 5-0. I feel like we’ve played some extremely good cricket … we have adapted brilliantly to different conditions and everyone’s chipped in at different times. It’s been a really good team effort the whole time over here. So one more big effort for us over here and blokes can take their holidays.”
Australia have swept a five-match ODI series four times. They did it in New Zealand in 2005, in the West Indies in 2008, against Pakistan in 2010 and against the Windies in 2012.
Maxwell was two short of his century on Friday when he was run out — the fifth time he has got out in his 90s. Incidentally, only eight players have been out in their 90s more than five times with India’s Sachin Tendulkar topping the list with 17.
Reacting to missing his century, Maxwell said: “I’m not going to look back on my career when I’m done and think about all the hundreds I’ve missed. I’m going to think about the wins we had. It would have been nice to get a hundred, but I was really happy with the way I played. To put that partnership on with (Alex) Carey, to get us to a total we thought we could defend. I was really proud of the way I went about it. The hundred doesn’t really matter too much to me.”
Maxwell is happy that he could play the role of an anchor and not play a short quick knock like he does most of the time. “It was nice to be there for the back end and delay the bigger hitting until a little bit later, when we felt like we could comfortably get to a total we could defend,” he said. “The last two games I’ve come in a bit earlier when we’ve lost a few wickets back to back, and there’s been a little bit of pressure on when I’ve gone out. It’s actually been nice to get through that, be able to get myself in, and not just go out and play a cameo knock in the last 10 overs.”
Australian skipper Aaron Finch added: “Maxwell played really well, assessing the situation, taking it deep. You can never accuse Glenn of being selfish, the way he plays. He does everything for the team.”