Glenn Maxwell: Hampshire stint led to Australia career
Australia's Glenn Maxwell says he owes his international career to Hampshire after returning to the county for a second spell at the Ageas Bowl.
Maxwell, 25, was signed by Hampshire in 2012 and his impressive form led to limited-overs international honours.
He also became the first $1m player in the Indian Premier League and scored 552 runs in this year's competition with a strike-rate of 187.75.
"It's been a pretty incredible two years," Maxwell told BBC Radio Solent.
"When I first arrived at Hampshire my career was in limbo. I wasn't in great nick with my domestic cricket but my first stint with Hampshire probably turned my career around which is amazing and it eventually got me playing for Australia. I owe Hampshire a lot and hopefully I can repay them this summer.
"The only reason I got picked for Australia was because of my county form here and the opportunity Hampshire gave me when no other team would. It was nice they took me on."
Maxwell's big-hitting skills helped Kings XI Punjab reach last Sunday's IPL final and he was named the tournament's Most Valuable Player following their defeat by Kolkata Knight Riders.
However, Australia want him to play in all formats of the game and he is eager to step in when South African Kyle Abbott goes on tour to Sri Lanka next month with his national side.
"Cricket Australia are massively keen for me to keep pushing for that Test spot as an all-rounder," he said.
"The more red-ball cricket I play the better the chance and hopefully Hampshire can give me that opportunity."
Maxwell will play his first T20 Blast game against Kent at the Ageas Bowl on Thursday and he is looking forward to playing alongside James Vince, the competition's leading run scorer this season after three half centuries in four games,
He added: "James Vince is a absolute superstar and the way he has started the season has been absolutely beautiful.
"We have a powerful batting line-up, especially with Michael Carberry coming back also."