MUMBAI (AFP) – Glenn Maxwell’s astounding double century during a nail-biting World Cup match for Australia is being hailed as one of the greatest one-day innings in cricket history. The mercurial Australian’s remarkable 201 not out propelled his team to victory over Afghanistan in Mumbai, marking the third double century in World Cup history and the first in a run chase.
However, Maxwell’s historic performance came at a steep cost, with severe cramps wracking his body. At one point, he even contemplated retirement as he collapsed in agony when he was on 147, with his team still needing 55 runs to win. But with a spot in the World Cup semi-finals on the line and Australia in dire straits at 91-7, Maxwell soldiered on despite the excruciating discomfort.
Reflecting on his physical ordeal, Maxwell revealed, “It was a strange one, because I was cramping in one of my toes, which was sort of going up the front of my shin. And then as I set off to try and get down the other end, I cramped in that calf as well. So I was cramping both sides of my lower leg. And as I went ‘Oh no, I’m cramping,’ I cramped in my left hamstring at the same time. So I was like, ‘I’ve got both legs.’ And then I had a back spasm when I hit the ground. So I was just like full body just in pain.”
Australian physio Nick Jones suggested Maxwell retire, but he was determined to see the match through, even though the chances of returning after treatment looked bleak. “Jonesy, the physio, said it would be really hard for me to come back down the stairs after that. We just came up with ‘let’s stay at the same end’ for as long as you can until you feel like you can walk to the other end or if there’s an easy single here and there,” Maxwell recounted.
Maxwell went on to establish the highest-ever One Day International (ODI) score by an Australian in a remarkable 202-run eighth-wicket partnership with captain Pat Cummins, who contributed just 12 runs. Cummins described Maxwell’s innings as the “greatest ODI innings that has ever happened,” securing Australia’s place in the World Cup semi-finals.
“From Max pressure to Max performance! This has been the best ODI knock I’ve seen in my life,” Indian legend Sachin Tendulkar said, while ex-India coach Ravi Shastri called it “stunning.” England’s Ben Stokes simply said: “My goodness Maxi,” and former West Indies fast bowler Ian Bishop hailed it as a reminder of “the intrinsic beauty, unpredictability, and inspiring drama of this wonderful game.”
Glenn Maxwell’s incredible determination and resilience have etched his name into cricketing history as he battled through intense pain to deliver an unforgettable performance for Australia.