Australia record biggest World Cup win, hammer Afghanistan by 275 runs
PERTH, MARCH 4
David Warner made mincemeat of an inexperienced Afghanistan bowling attack with a magnificent 178 as hosts Australia thrashed Afghanistan by 275 runs after piling up a tournament record 417 for six in a group league match of the cricket World Cup here on Wednesday.
Batting first, Australia surpassed India’s 413 for five against Bermuda in 2007.
Afghanistan were never in the match as they were bundled out for 142 in 37.3 overs a few days after their initial high following the Scotland victory.The pace and bounce extracted by Mitchell Johnson (4/22) was too much for the Afghans to handle as Australia went into the match with business like precision after their one-wicket defeat to New Zealand in a low-scoring tie.
Mitchell Starc (2/18) and Josh Hazlewood (2/25) were also impressive while skipper Michael Clarke did roll his arm over for five overs to get a wicket in the process.
For Afghanistan Nawroj Mangal (33) hit two huge sixes off Marsh before Aaron Finch’s brilliant catch off Johnson ended his stay.
Earlier, courtesy Warner’s career-best innings off 133 balls and an attractive 95 off 98 deliveries from Steven Smith, Australia dominated with the duo adding a record 260 runs for the second-wicket partnership.
While Warner’s fourth ODI hundred was studded with 19 boundaries and five sixes, Smith’s innings had eight boundaries and a six.
The stage was then set for Glenn Maxwell to give the final flourish with a scintillating 88 off only 39 balls, joining the run feast by sending the bowlers on a leather hunt. There were 14 sixes in all in the innings.
Maxwell hit six boundaries and seven sixes in his brief innings that was high on entertainment quotient.
After a disappointing batting show against New Zealand, the Australian team needed a run feast and Warner, Smith and Maxwell provided the sizable crowd enough entertainment.
Maxwell played some amazing reverse flicks along with old fashioned thwacks over extra cover and deep fine leg to completely deflate the Afghan attack.
While Warner muscled the deliveries from the pace trio of Shapoor Zadran, Dawlat Zadran and Hamid Hassan into gaps as well as into the stands, Maxwell hit the most amazing six off left-arm pacer Shapoor.
It was a full length delivery which Maxwell played over first slip for a six. Skipper Mohammed Nabi’s friendly off-breaks were either dispatched over the ropes or past it as Maxwell completed his half-ton in only 21 balls with an effortless reverse hit off a full-toss.
While Warner got his boundaries during powerplay overs, his 100 off 92 balls didn’t have a single six but 11 fours.
The big hits started from the 30th over when Warner launched into Dawlat, hitting his length balls for successive sixes over long-on. When Shapoor made the same mistake, he met with same fate as the balls sailed over mid-on, square leg region.
While Warner looked good for a double hundred, he was dismissed trying to hit Shapoor for his sixth over boundary only to offer a skier for Nabi. Shapoor got his second wicket when he denied Smith what would have been a well-deserved century as he holed out at mid-off.
Maxwell’s mayhem also looked like fetching him his maiden three-figure mark in ODIs before he failed to pick up a slower one and was caught at extra cover.
The two Zadrans — Dawlat and Shapoor – were the worst sufferers as the former went for 101 in 10 overs while the latter was hit for as many 89.