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Maxwell smashes record books; single-handedly takes Australia into the semis

CWC 2023: Glenn Maxwell's 201 off 128 single-handedly takes Australia into the semi-finals. Can Maxwell's 201 be called greatest ODI innings ever played?

CWC 2023, Afghanistan vs Australia_ Glenn Maxwell scored 201 off 128 balls against Afghanistan  _ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©ICC_Twitter)
Glenn Maxwell guides Australia to CWC 2023 semi-finals (Images: ©ICC/Twitter)

A remarkable performance by Glenn Maxwell has propelled Australia into the CWC 2023 semi-finals. Australia had the daunting task of chasing down 292 runs, courtesy of Ibrahim Zadran's outstanding innings of 129 that bolstered Afghanistan's total.

The Australian innings didn't start as anticipated, with the team collapsing to a precarious 91-7. It was at this dire moment that Glenn Maxwell emerged as the saviour, displaying a magical double century to secure a breathtaking victory over Afghanistan at Mumbai's Wankhede Stadium. Maxwell began his innings with maturity, aiming to stabilize a team that was already seven wickets down when he took the crease.

The all-rounder managed the innings admirably but encountered cramps and back issues during the middle phase. Despite the discomfort, he persevered, ultimately delivering an astonishing unbeaten 201 off 128 balls. His remarkable performance has been hailed as one of the greatest innings in World Cup history. In a dire situation where Australia had lost seven wickets for just 91 runs, Maxwell calmly navigated the team towards an improbable victory, even with a hamstring injury.

Injuries and dropped chances: Maxwell’s tryst with luck!

Throughout his innings, Maxwell battled the injury, with the physio called onto the field several times for treatment. Despite the pain, Maxwell refused to give up, recognizing that his team relied on him, with no other batters left to lead them to victory. Pat Cummins, the skipper, provided crucial support and stood with Maxwell till the end.

His innings had its share of luck, surviving a few close calls and dropped catches, courtesy of Afghanistan's misfielding incidents. These missed opportunities served as turning points, as Maxwell capitalized on them to alter the fate of the match.

The Afghanistan bowlers, who initially had the upper hand, struggled to dismiss Maxwell and Cummins. Glenn Maxwell became Australia's only hope, and against all odds, he demonstrated his resilience and ability to thrive in challenging situations.

CWC 2023, Afghanistan vs Australia_ Glenn Maxwell scored 201 runs against Afghanistan  _ Walking Wicket (Images_ ©X_Twitter)
Maxwell scored his maiden ODI double ton (Images: ©X/Twitter)
Glenn Maxwell showcases his shot-catalogue

Maxwell's innings featured some extraordinary shots that showcased his unique skills, some of which had never been seen before in international cricket. Even in his struggle towards the end, he unleashed powerful strokes without much movement, displaying his exceptional batting prowess.

Australia seemed destined to be the latest victim of Afghanistan's impressive World Cup campaign, but Maxwell's heroic effort lifted his team from a perilous crisis. He became only the third player in history to score a double century in a World Cup, leaving the cricketing world in awe. Maxwell's magnificent display marked the third-highest individual score in the ICC Men's ODI Cricket World Cup and the highest individual score in a chase in Men's ODI history.

Glenn Maxwell's remarkable innings will be etched in cricket history as one of the greatest white-ball performances. His ability to perform magical feats on the field sets him apart, and this historic moment will be remembered for years to come.

While there have been instances of players leading their teams to unexpected victories, such as Virat Kohli's innings against Pakistan last year and MS Dhoni's heroics, Maxwell's innings was truly distinctive. His resilience and dazzling knock highlighted why Australia is known as the ‘World Champions’.

In conclusion, Glenn Maxwell's extraordinary innings, despite his discomfort and challenges, exemplified the indomitable spirit that characterises Australia's cricketing excellence.

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