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Aaron Finch was 'never doubting' he would emerge from slump

The Australia captain found his touch with a half-century in Wellington after a difficult time

Andrew McGlashan
Andrew McGlashan
On another day, Aaron Finch might have been walking back for a first-ball duck in Wellington on Wednesday, a continuation of his lean run in T20s, but instead he was able to reflect on a half-century, his first in 27 innings, which helped set up a convincing victory.
Backed by team-mates, the coach and the selectors, Finch's form had nonetheless starting to become a significant focus as Australia head towards the end of their season and then a winter where they will be settling on a squad for the T20 World Cup in October.
It appears unlikely that Finch's position would have been scrutinised, but a return to form has helped avoid any awkward conversations or selection calls.
"It's never easy when you are trying to lead the side and not performing as well as you would like. But you always put the team first," Finch said. "I felt my captaincy has been pretty good throughout this period and the Big Bash. I would have loved to have got some more runs but was never doubting that I'd ever get runs again.
"T20 can be brutal game at the best of the times, just having the ability to take a step back and reassess my own game and go out there with a clear mind. It was great to have the support of the selectors."
Finch had been through a similar run two years ago with the 50-over World Cup even closer on the horizon than the T20 one later this year and in the nick of time surged back on a tour of India and didn't look back in that format. T20 offers less time to play yourself back into form such is the pressure to score quickly but a couple of straight drives in Wellington got him up and running.
"It's one of those games that sometimes the better intent you have the luckier you get," he said. "As a batter it can be bloody tough at times. Just having the confidence to keep backing my instinct and keep backing my game was the most important thing. I know I've done it before, I'm not a bad player.
"I don't look too much technically, think it's more a mental thing. Sometimes when you are searching for a score you forget the absolute basics. You always get a bit fixated on the end result and not what's right in front of you. At times it was wanting desperately to get some runs and forgetting to watch the ball, one percent can be enough in this game to be out and your run continues."
Earlier in the tour, Finch's wife Amy had revealed she had been receiving significant abuse on social media as his low scores continued. "It's never ideal when your family or partner is getting abuse for how you're performing. That's just not what it should be," he said. "I'm fine to cop criticism about my game, that's part of the job, but when it turns into abuse to your family that's a bit past the line."

Andrew McGlashan is a deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo