'He's a freak': Maxwell innings lauded as greatest ever

Afghanistan will rue their dropped catches that gifted Glenn Maxwell two lives en route to the first ODI double century from an Australian male

Mission Impossible: Mercurial Maxwell does the unthinkable

Pat Cummins labelled Glenn Maxwell's double-century against Afghanistan as the greatest ODI innings of all time as Afghanistan lamented a series of squandered chances to dismiss him.

Maxwell's unbeaten 201 from just 128 deliveries is being hailed as one of the finest performances in cricket history, having singlehandedly lifted his side from 7-91 to chase down 292 and seal a spot in the World Cup semi-finals.

It came despite the mercurial 35-year-old battling full-body cramps for much of the back half of his innings and having been sidelined from their previous match due to a concussion in a golf-cart mishap.

"I think that's the greatest ODI innings I've ever seen. It's probably the greatest ODI innings ever," said Cummins, who made 12 off 68 balls in a 202-run stand with Maxwell, the biggest ODI partnership for the eighth wicket or lower.

"We're just chatting about it, all the players and we’ve decided it's one of those days where you just go, 'I was there in the stadium the day Glenn Maxwell chased down that total by himself'.

"He was cramping but I think you saw out there how much he loves playing for Australia and (that he’d) do anything to play."

Ben Stokes, who lays claim to one of the best Test knocks of all-time with his Headingley miracle hand during the 2019 Ashes, and Australia's legendary wicketkeeper-batter Adam Gilchrist were among those to voice their approval.

Cummins could hardly believe the range of shots Maxwell played while he was hobbled.

"He can't move and still manages to hit a six over the third man with the reverse (sweep) – he’s a freak," said the Australia captain.

"He hits into different areas, he makes it look so easy, and when you're up against someone like that as a bowler, you just, you don't have many options."

Maxwell was dropped on 24 and 33, the second a simple chance at short fine-leg from Mujeeb-ur-Rahman, who had salt rubbed into his wound when the Victorian hit consecutive sixes off him to ice the chase.

"We obviously gave them two lives," said Afghanistan coach Jonathan Trott, the former England batter. "You give any world-class player two lives, he's going to hurt you.

"It's ended up costing us a game today, an important game, the fielding."

Mujeeb ur Rahman drops Glenn Maxwell with the Aussie on 33 // Getty

Afghanistan would have virtually guaranteed their first win over Australia in any format had an lbw review off Noor Ahmed, when Maxwell was on 29, stayed with the on-field decision.

Ball-tracking showed it was narrowly going over the top and Trott admitted the missed chances had a mental effect on his players.

"When unfortunately the second catch went down, everyone just seemed to sort of (start) waiting for Maxwell to get out," he said.

"I didn't see a lot of encouragement or people cheering up each other and encouraging each other. It seemed like was a little bit 'hopefully we'll still win' type thing.

Glenn Maxwell survives a DRS review // Fox Cricket

"When you get an opportunity against a side like Australia, you've got to grab it. They're not going to just give it to you. And you've got to take it. If you get a chance to take it, you've got to take it.

"That's the type of things we'll learn from today and what we just spoke about in the dressing room.

"Full credit to him, the way that he played to get a double hundred is phenomenal. He deserved to win the game …but certainly, there are a few things we could have done differently."

Australia's 2023 ODI World Cup fixtures

October 8: Lost to India by six wickets

October 12: Lost to South Africa by 134 runs

October 16: Beat Sri Lanka by five wickets

October 20: Beat Pakistan by 62 runs

October 25: Beat Netherlands by 309 runs

October 28: Beat New Zealand by five runs

November 4: Beat England by 33 runs

November 7: Beat Afghanistan by three wickets

November 11: v Bangladesh, Pune, 4pm AEDT

Australia squad: Pat Cummins (c), Sean Abbott, Alex Carey, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa

2023 World Cup standings

Matches played
No results
Net Run Rate
Total points
1 India Men India Men IND 9 9 0 0 0 2.57 0 18
2 South Africa Men South Africa Men SA 9 7 2 0 0 1.261 0 14
3 Australia Men Australia Men AUS 9 7 2 0 0 0.841 0 14
4 New Zealand Men New Zealand Men NZ 9 5 4 0 0 0.743 0 10
5 Pakistan Men Pakistan Men PAK 9 4 5 0 0 -0.199 0 8
6 Afghanistan Men Afghanistan Men AFG 9 4 5 0 0 -0.336 0 8
7 England Men England Men ENG 9 3 6 0 0 -0.572 0 6
8 Bangladesh Men Bangladesh Men BAN 9 2 7 0 0 -1.087 0 4
9 Sri Lanka Men Sri Lanka Men SL 9 2 7 0 0 -1.419 0 4
10 Netherlands Men Netherlands Men NED 9 2 7 0 0 -1.825 0 4

M: Matches played

W: Wins

L: Losses

T: Ties

N/R: No results

NRR: Net Run Rate

Ded.: Deductions

PTS: Total points