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Glenn Maxwell saves Australia! Cricket star hits one of the greatest EVER innings to rescue Pat Cummins’ side with the all-rounder denying Afghanistan a famous victory in Mumbai

The city of Mumbai with its famous maidans is steeped in cricketing history and this iconic ground alone would have seen many a special innings.

Not least from some of its most famous sons like Sachin Tendulkar and Sunil Gavaskar.

But in all of its years, it would never have seen an innings as utterly insane, as utterly ridiculous as the double hundred it witnessed from Australia‘s Glenn Maxwell, who battled through a back injury and body cramps against Afghanistan, to snatch a three-wicket win from the jaws of defeat.

‘It’s pretty cool,’ said Maxwell as he stood in the changing rooms after the match to avoid further cramping. 

‘It’s a bit fresh and I’m a bit numb to it right now but it was great fun. It just felt like it was me and Patty (Cummins) having fun out there. I’ve never been in a position where I’ve had full body cramps like that but it probably made the job simple for me,’ added Maxwell.

Glenn Maxwell produced one of the greatest innings of all time for Australia Glenn Maxwell produced one of the greatest innings of all time for Australia

Glenn Maxwell produced one of the greatest innings of all time for Australia

Pat Cummins' side were at one point 91-7 before Maxwell rescued his team Pat Cummins' side were at one point 91-7 before Maxwell rescued his team

Pat Cummins’ side were at one point 91-7 before Maxwell rescued his team

He battled severe cramps after returning from concussion on Tuesday He battled severe cramps after returning from concussion on Tuesday

He battled severe cramps after returning from concussion on Tuesday

As he heaved Mujeeb ul Rahman into the stands to secure Australia’s place in the World Cup semi-finals, the entirety of the Wankhede rose in appreciation of a gladiatorial innings for the ages.

Maxwell had arrived in the middle three hours earlier in a chase of 292 to face a hat-trick ball with Pat Cummins’ side 49 for four, after Afghanistan’s quicks had caused carnage. That he was even in the side was remarkable, after he fell off a golf buggy last Monday and was ruled out of their win over England due to concussion.

With the hat-trick ball, Azmatullah Ozarzai found Maxwell’s outside edge but the ball failed to carry to the wicketkeeper Hamid Alikhil.

When Alikhil pulled off a stunning reflex catch to remove Mitchell Starc, Australia were reeling at 91 for seven and Jonathan Trott’s men were on their way to yet another famous scalp.

Ultimately, it was only the heroic Maxwell who denied them, smashing 21 fours and 10 sixes on his way to an unbeaten 201 off 128 deliveries.

He was dropped twice on 24 and 33 and was halfway back to the pavilion on 27 when he realised his review was successful.

Alongside Cummins, the pair put on an unbroken record eighth-wicket partnership of 202, of which Cummins himself contributed just 12 off 68 deliveries. He must have felt like a spectator on the other end with the best seat in the house as Maxwell quite literally, stood and delivered.

‘It’s the greatest ODI innings I’ve ever seen,’ said Cummins. ‘It’s probably the greatest ODI innings ever. The lads were chatting with each other and saying how it’s one of those days where you just go, I was there in the stadium the day Glenn Maxwell chased down the total all by himself,’ the Australia captain added.

At one stage, with 55 runs still needed, Maxwell fell flat on the floor with his body cramping up while finishing a run.

Not for the first time in the innings, Adam Zampa was waiting on the boundary edge to come out to bat as Australia’s physio Nick Jones came out but again, Maxwell somehow found the sheer will to carry on through the pain. He could not run but continued to clear the ropes with ease, playing off one leg at times.

From that point, the 35-year-old dealt in boundaries alone, with 50 of Australia’s last 56 runs coming with fours and sixes.

With 21 needed off four overs, Maxwell needed just four balls as he finished Afghanistan off going six, six, four and six off consecutive deliveries to cap off the greatest of innings and add Australia’s first ever ODI double hundred to the fastest World Cup century he scored against the Netherlands earlier in the tournament.

For Afghanistan, it was a huge missed opportunity on a night when they could have put themselves on the brink of a historic first World Cup semi-final.

‘It was a world-class innings but we certainly helped him along the way,’ admitted Trott. ‘When you get an opportunity against a side like Australia, you’ve got to grab it. But full credit to him. The way he played was phenomenal. He deserved to win that game.’

MumbaiAustralia CricketAfghanistan

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