GLENN MAXWELL believes he tried too hard to impress at the start of his Yorkshire career after finally finding form with the club.
The Australian struggled for runs in the T20 Blast, scoring 229 in 12 innings – including 92 in one outing.
But he has found his mojo in the Royal London Cup, where he is Yorkshire’s top scorer with 308 at 61.
It has been a welcome turnaround for the Australian, who has helped Yorkshire to the brink of the quarter-finals.
As the club prepared for today’s Royal London game against Somerset at Scarborough (10.30 start), Maxwell admitted he had been over-eager to do well when he first arrived.
“It’s probably the case that I was trying too hard,” he said.
“That urgency to do well and to try to impress has probably been a bit to my downfall.
“I was so eager to do well that I found myself getting out in really soft ways as I wanted to score runs and stamp my authority.
“I’ve just tried to relax into the one-day stuff and I feel really confident in that format; I feel it suits me down to a tee.”
Maxwell proved how much it suited him with some superb displays at the World Cup earlier this year.
The 26-year-old scored 324 runs in six innings at a strike-rate of 182 to help his country to the trophy.
Now Maxwell hopes to carry his 50-over form into the one-day series against England that starts on September 3.
He leaves Yorkshire at the back end of August and is targeting a big finish to help them in their quest for a first one-day trophy since 2002 and a second successive County Championship.
“I want to hit the one-day international series flying,” said Maxwell.
“We’re playing well in the Royal London Cup, and hopefully I can help to keep that going.
“I’m just pleased to contribute, particularly when I felt as though I’d been hitting the ball well throughout the summer.
“There’s still plenty of improvement I want to do, and I hope to keep the momentum going.”
Maxwell’s batting has sparkled lately, but his bowling work should not be overlooked.
He was the club’s second-highest wicket-taker in T20 with 12, and his off-spin and fielding have been potent weapons.
“I’ve been pleased with my bowling,” he said.
“At least when I wasn’t making runs I was still contributing in other ways, and I never felt out of the game.
“It’s just been frustrating not to contribute in all three areas as, being an all-rounder, you want to do that.
“I felt like I’d been doing two out of three but just not quite doing the third, so it’s nice to hopefully put it all together.”
Today’s game is Yorkshire’s seventh Royal London match in 11 days, six of which have effectively been away from home if you factor in travel to and from Scarborough.
The club have journeyed circa 900 miles during that period.
“I’ve been talking to James Faulkner (Lancashire’s Australian overseas player) about how he’s been going with the workloads, because it’s a bit different for us Aussies,” said Maxwell.
“With our system back home, we have the one-dayers bunched together at the start and then the four-dayers over the space of eight to nine weeks, so you get that break in between where it’s just chill-out time and you can do all your training and rehab.
“You just don’t get that time over here and it’s pretty full on. All the travelling can be draining too.”
Another Yorkshire player who has found form lately is Alex Lees, who has fought his way through a sticky period.
The opening batsmen, who has captained Yorkshire in the absence of Andrew Gale, has been impressed with Maxwell in the 50-over game.
“He’s come into form and he’s got that X-factor,” said Lees. “Once he gets in, people don’t know where to bowl to him.
“He’s been frustrated – professional pride is a massive thing, particularly when you’re an international player, but he’s in good form now. But he’s so talented as a cricketer and three-dimensional, and he has a positive effect on the other players.”
Gale returns to the squad for today’s game against a Somerset side who have lost four of their five group matches.
Matthew Waite is unavailable due to what the club describe as personal reasons.
Yorkshire squad (from): Ballance, Bresnan, Brooks, Carver, Fisher, Gale, Gibson, Hodd, Leaning, Lees, Maxwell, Patterson, Pyrah, Rhodes.