Maxwell, who played a crucial role in Aaron Finch’s historic squad in the United Arab Emirates in 2021, emphasized the team’s upbeat spirit.He recalled his unbeaten 28 in the final against New Zealand.
Riding high on the momentum of his extraordinary match-winning double-century against Afghanistan last week, the versatile all-rounder expressed confidence in Australia’s position. He believes the team draws significant motivation from their recent victory over Afghanistan and is well-positioned to pursue and secure a record-extending sixth ODI World Cup title.
“The excitement of that match has given us a whole new belief going forward,” Maxwell said in an interview with Australian broadcaster Fox Sports.
“It reminded me of the T20 World Cup in 2021. The same sort of feeling. The feeling around the group was energetic, electric, exciting and everyone felt they were heading towards the same end goal. And who knows, it could be the same thing here.”
Despite grappling with a full-body cramp during his batting stint against Afghanistan, Maxwell steered Australia to victory with an unbeaten 201 off 128 balls. In this exceptional performance, he heavily relied on his hands and reflexes to expertly dispatch the bowlers around the ground.
The innings swiftly earned acclaim as the greatest ODI innings of all time, with numerous former players and pundits singing its praises. As Australia and Maxwell stood just five runs away from securing their first double-century in ODIs, the right-handed batter expressed unwavering confidence that he would achieve the milestone with a six off spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman.
True to his conviction, Maxwell smashed Mujeeb over the deep midwicket fence, securing the required runs and notching up Australia’s first-ever double-century in the ODIs. This remarkable feat added another layer to the accolades surrounding Maxwell’s extraordinary performance.
“It may sound arrogant and over-confident but (it was) because I knew I had the short boundary, because I knew Mujeeb,” he said.
“We’ve played against and with each other. I’ve spent a whole IPL training with him, having little contests and spending a lot of time with him. And I’d faced most of his overs he’d bowled at that stage. I just felt like, ‘I’ve got this … I know I don’t have to hit it out of the middle to get a six’.”
(With Reuters inputs)