Glenn Maxwell played a vital part during the Twenty20 International series against Sri Lanka but he stunned the cricketing world when he announced that he was taking a break from cricket in order to deal with mental health issues. Now, left-handed batsman Nic Maddinson has followed suit as he announced his decision to pull out of the Australia A clash against Pakistan in order to deal with mental health issues. Cameron Bancroft will replace Maddinson for the three-day match against Pakistan at Perth Stadium from Monday. His withdrawal almost certainly rules him out of the opening Test against Pakistan in Brisbane later this month, with the Australia A game widely seen as a final chance to impress selectors. It opens the door to Travis Head or rising star Will Pucovski, who has also struggled with mental health issues in the past, to stake their case.
Many experts hailed Maddinson's decision to take a break. "Nic has made the right decision and we are all behind him. It is braver to speak up than to suffer in silence and I applaud Nic for having the courage to put his health first," said Australia A coach Graeme Hick.
Alex Kountouris, Cricket Australia's head of sports science and medicine, said the governing body was committed to better understanding mental health and supporting those needing help. "Mental health is a challenge faced by Australian communities and elite sporting organisations and cricket is no different. Like other professional sports we are working very hard to better understand the challenges faced by our players and staff so we can support them," Kountouris said.
Maddinson has played three Tests for Australia in 2016 and six Twenty20 Internationals from the period of 2013 till 2018. Australia will play two Tests against Pakistan which is part of the ICC World Test Championships. The first Test will be played in Brisbane on November 21 till November 25 followed by the second Test on November 29 in Adelaide.