ODI World Cup digest: Epic Maxwell puts Australia in semi-finals

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The Men’s ODI World Cup 2023 is approaching the final on November 19. Each morning we’ll round up the latest action and news from the event and bring you insights from our on-the-ground reporters.

Main article: Maxwell 201* brings home Australian miracle and a semi-final

Australia 293 by 7 (Maxwell 201*) beat Afghanistan 291 for 5 (Ibrahim 129*, Rashid 35*) for three wickets

At one stage, Australia were 91 for 7 chasing 292. Then Glenn Maxwell Glenn Maxwell smashed his way to a double century and they not only won the game but also sealed their place in the World Cup semi-finals.

After Ibrahim Zadran became Afghanistan’s first World Cup centurion, Naveen-ul-Haq and Azmatullah Omarzai tore apart Australia’s top order as they threatened to script a famous victory at Wankhede. But Maxwell intervened with a sensational 201 not out, 179 of which were scored in an unbroken 202-run partnership with his captain Pat Cummins, to change the script. The result confirmed Australia’s place in the final four, alongside hosts India and South Africa, and left Afghanistan heartbroken.

Match analysis: Maxwell tops adversity to give Australia its knockout blow

Glenn Maxwell was down. He scored his 147th run, the 35th single of his innings, and collapsed on the Wankhede turf, clutching his hamstring and his face contorted in pain. As his muscles contracted and spasmed, Maxwell thrashed on the floor, his movements involuntary as his lower body took on a life of its own.

While trying to calm him down, Australian physiotherapist Nick Jones explained to Maxwell that if he left it would probably be difficult to get back up. In the distance, Adam Zampa walked down the locker room stairs, ready to take Maxwell’s place. And that’s when he decided that wasn’t going to happen.

Maxwell was down, but he wasn’t out and he certainly wasn’t going to choose to be.

Reaction: Cummins hails ‘best ODI innings ever’

When asked how he felt after his effort, Glenn Maxwell said at the Man of the Match presentation: “Horrible! I feel shocking! It was obviously quite hot when we played today, and I haven’t really done anything.” Lots of high intensity exercise in the heat, and it certainly got me today.

“We had a plan to stay on the same end for a while until I could get some movement back and luckily I was able to hold on until the end.”

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England vs Netherlands, Pune (2:00 pm IST; 8:30 am GMT; 7:30 pm AEDT)

“Champions of Europe… you will never sing that!”

That’s right, here’s one in the eye for all those glory-seekers in the upper echelons of the World Cup table, queuing up to receive their invite to the big ball in Ahmedabad in two weeks’ time. There’s a lesser title up for grabs in Pune on Wednesday; so insignificant, in fact, that it is not even an official title, unlike the one an amateur team from England claimed at the European Cricket Championships in Malaga last month. And look who they beat by eight wickets in the final… none other than the defending champions, Netherlands! Stop this farce! Cricket is back home!

Seriously though, England would be very happy to abandon this miserable campaign right now.

Article: How Holland will plan its best chance to win the Champions Trophy

On Tuesday afternoon at the JW Marriott hotel in Pune, three men will huddle around a laptop screen and hatch a plan to achieve a victory that would rank among the most important in Dutch cricket history.

Beat England on Wednesday and the Netherlands will be on the cusp of qualifying for the 2025 Champions Trophy, a tournament specifically designed to exclude teams like them. Scott Edwards, Ryan Cook and Ryan van Niekerk, their captain, coach and bowling coach, will know exactly what is at stake when they work out their strategy.

“The three of us will watch videos individually,” Edwards explained to ESPNcricinfo. “We do quite a bit on our own. We’ll have our own ideas and plans, then we’ll all get together, pick the best ones, and shape them all together. Usually one of us has to buy dinner, and then we’ll go from there.”