Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell has taken a break from cricket owing to his struggles with mental health, Cricket Australia stated on Thursday, 31 October. D'Arcy Short will replace him in the squad for the final T20I against Sri Lanka on Friday, 1 November.
The Australia team psychologist, Michael Lloyd, said Maxwell will "spend a short time away from the game" and pointed out that the 31-year-old was "proactive in identifying these issues and engaging with the support staff."
It needs to be mentioned here that the struggles didn't seem to outwardly affect Maxwell's performances. In the first two T20Is against Sri Lanka, he was excellent on the field, and scored a 28-ball 62 in his only outing with the bat in the first match and was at his quirky best on the field when speaking with the commentators.
'Full support of Cricket Australia'
The all-rounder has taken a break with "the full support" of Cricket Australia. "The well-being of our players and staff is paramount. Glenn has our full support," said Ben Oliver, CA's general manager of national teams. "Cricket Australia will work collaboratively with Cricket Victoria's support staff to ensure Glenn's well-being and his reintegration into the game.
"We ask that everyone gives Glenn and his family and friends space; and respects their privacy at this time. He's a special player and an important part of the Australian cricket family. We hope to see him back in the team during the summer. It's important we look after Glenn and all our players."
Australia head coach, Justin Langer, praised Maxwell for being forthright with the problem, and said he showed "great courage" to admit that "he wasn't OK".
"It took great courage for him to tell us he wasn't OK," Langer told the reporters in Melbourne. "In one way, it's really good for him to do that. Behind the mask of the great entertainer and the great talent and the great team man and everything we see publicly, a lot of these guys are human and they're hurting a bit. Hopefully, he's going to be fine."
The head coach further added that the Australian team management would always stay in touch with Maxwell and that, there will be all possible support extended to the player.
"Even though in Adelaide he had that brilliant innings and he fielded like a genius like he can, I don't think he got much joy out of it to be honest and that's not much fun. Not just doing to win games of cricket, you have to have fun while you do it. He's probably not having as much fun as he would have liked at the moment, even though he had a smile on his face when he played.