Glenn Maxwell stunned Afghanistan on Tuesday as Australia defeated the former by three wickets in a thrilling group match of the ongoing ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup in Mumbai, India. The Australian batter produced one of the greatest innings in World Cup history, hitting an incredible unbeaten double-century.
Glenn Maxwell helps Australia beat Afghanistan in 2023 World Cup
Maxwell, 35, terrorized Afghanistan’s bowlers and smashed them all over the pitch as he and skipper Pat Cummins snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. The 35-year-old batted when his team was 49-4 and Josh Inglis had just been bowled for a golden duck. Maxwell, on the other hand, was dropped by Hashmatullah Shahidi and Mujeeb ur Rehman on two separate occasions.
Afghanistan’s bowlers caused havoc for Australian batters in the early overs and were on their way to a resounding victory. Still, Maxwell became the sole source of their anguish, as the right-handed destructive batter gave Shahidi’s men no choice or chance. Maxwell was ably assisted by Cummins, who batted calmly and sensibly, scoring 12 runs in 68 balls.
The 35-year-old also had cramps and could not run in the final few overs while also playing shots with no footwork. Glenn Maxwell became the first batter in ODI history to score a 200-run chase, as well as the first player to score two centuries in a World Cup batting at No. 5 or lower.
Batting first, Ibrahim Zadran was the standout performer, becoming the first Afghani batter to score a century in World Cup history. While other Afghani batters struggled to score big, it was Zadran who came in as an opener and stayed until the end, assisting his team to a good total. Rashid Khan provided significant support to Zadran during the final five overs, scoring 35 off just 18 deliveries with two fours and three sixes.
Rahmat Shah (30), Hashmatullah Shahidi (26) and Azmatullah Omarzai (22) also contributed to the victory. Except for Josh Hazlewood, no Australian bowler lived up to expectations, as the right-handed pacer conceded only 39 runs in nine overs while also taking two crucial wickets. Afghanistan will now play another crucial match against South Africa on November 9. Meanwhile, in their final group match, Australia will face Bangladesh on November 11.