The ongoing 2023 Cricket World Cup has given fans plenty of entertainment and thrilling cricket matches. We have seen Australia bounce back to winning ways after being written off. Meanwhile, defending champions England are currently living a nightmare. Virat Kohli equalled Sachin Tendulkar’s world record of 49 ODI tons and Rachin Ravindra became the first batter to bag 3 ODI centuries in his debut World Cup. The bowling department has also not disappointed as Mohammed Shami has scorched the pitches with two five-wicket hauls, and also a four-fer.
One of the players to have stood out in the tournament is Aussie all-rounder Glenn Maxwell. He wasn’t in good form ahead of the tournament and Australia went on to crash to defeats in their first two games. The all-rounder exploded in their key fixture against Afghanistan on Tuesday.
Australia were set a target of 292 runs and were stunned early on in their chase. The Afghans began on a strong note as Azmatullah Omarzai and Naveen-ul-Haq removed openers David Warner (18) and Travis (0) early. Then the top-order collapsed as Mitchell Marsh (24), Marnus Labuschagne (14), Josh Inglis (0) also departed with Australia reeling at 49/4 in 8.2 overs. It looked Afghanistan would bag another famous win but Maxwell had other plans and came to his side’s rescue with an unbeaten knock which will go down in the annals of cricket history.
Maxwell took on the Afghan bowlers with ease and was in total destruction mode, which he has been famous for in T20 cricket. He ended smacking 201* off 128 balls, packed with 21 sixes and 10 fours as Australia reached 293/7 in 46.5 overs, winning by three wickets. The win helped Australia further establish themselves as one of the title contenders and also cemented their position in third-place.
Speaking on the Club Prairie Fire podcast, Aussie legend Adam Gilchrist made a bombshell statement on Maxwell, crediting him for saving ODI cricket. “But I do have to give way to what is the best-ever ODI innings played by Maxi. It is not just that, this could be interesting or an overstatement, I am seeing an innings that could potentially save one-day cricket. I think the way this has been acknowledged. How long will this be acknowledged for, suspect it will be a little while, anyone gets near it, particularly from the match situation,” he said.
“If you reflect back at the short history of T20 cricket, there has been some phenomenal stuff, hasn’t it. There’s been miraculous victories, when it’s all lost. This is the beauty of one-day cricket, we have all forgotten. You have got time for the story to be told, you have got games that look like it’s lost, but you can consolidate, rebuild and then relaunch. But T20 doesn’t allow that,” he further added.