Maxwell: I doubted my ability

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Glenn Maxwell admits he started to question his ability prior to playing the starring role in Australia's record-breaking Twenty20 international innings on Tuesday.

Maxwell produced an unbeaten 145 as Australia set a new record total of 263, earning an 85-run victory over Sri Lanka in the opening T20I.

The 27-year-old, who was left out of the recent one-day international series against the same opponents, fired 14 fours and nine maximums in a stunning display in Pallekele.

"I've been out of the one-day team for a while now, so to get my first crack back in the main team and to do as well as I did today was brilliant," said Maxwell.

"I had doubted a fair bit about my ability at this level, so to come out and strike the ball like I did today was really pleasing. And to have a team score like that is also really pleasing." 

Maxwell's total was just 11 short of Aaron Finch's individual record and, with the injured opener in attendance, he was all too aware of how close he came to further history.

"Of course I knew what it was [Finch's record]," he added. "I used to live with him, so I knew exactly what it was.

"And he kept telling me at every drinks break, so I was well aware of it and he kept on saying that I was going to beat it.

"Then Heady [Travis Head] started smacking them out of the park, so I didn't even get a chance. It was perfect."