Qantas Tour of Zimbabwe
Maxwell clarifies handshake incident
Australia allrounder says "genuine oversight" behind handshake snub, with Maxwell out to make amends before departing Harare
9 July 2018, 06:00 PM AEST
Australia allrounder Glenn Maxwell has moved to clarify suggestions he snubbed Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed after Sunday’s T20I tri-series final in Harare, explaining the incident was a “genuine oversight”.
Footage shown on television after the game – which Pakistan won by six wickets to take out the trophy – appeared to show Maxwell walking past Sarfraz, who had his hand extended ready for a handshake, before going on to shake hands with other members of the Pakistan team.
While no Pakistan players have spoken publicly about the incident, the footage prompted angry reactions from cricket commentators and fans on social media.
Maxwell took to social media on Monday, ahead of the Australian team’s departure from Harare, to explain what had happened.
“Congrats to Pakistan on their win yesterday, Fakhar Zaman and Shoaib Malik were unstoppable,” the allrounder wrote.
“Sad note to end our tour of Zimbabwe, but still plenty of positives to take out of it.
“In regards to the incident shown post match, it appears unsportsmanlike, and certainly not the way I play the game.
“It was a genuine oversight on my behalf and I’m currently looking for Sarfraz in the hotel to shake his hand and congratulate him and his team on their series win.”
In-form Pakistan proved too good for Australia in Sunday’s final, with a competitive total of 8-183 not enough to stop Sarfraz’s team.
Maxwell claimed two early wickets to have Pakistan in early trouble at 2-2, but opening batsman Fakhar Zaman put his team back on track when he blasted a sublime 91 from 46 balls.
Zaman combined with veteran Shoaib Malik (43 not out) for a fourth-wicket partnership of 107 as Pakistan passed Australia's total with four balls to spare - their highest successful run-chase in T20Is.
Australia captain Aaron Finch praised Pakistan’s efforts after the game.
"Towards the end they bowled really well and we just kept losing a few wickets which stalls your momentum a touch,” he said.
"I thought we started off very well with the ball but we probably lost our way in the middle there, Fakhar Zaman played a hell of a knock."