World Cup 2023 Points Table Updated: Australia goes big with six wins in as many games as they defeated Afghanistan by the barest of the margins in the last game held at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai. The mighty Aussies chased down 291 runs total set up by Afghanistan with three overs to spare and historic innings from all-rounder Glenn Maxwell, who was tested throughout his innings. Australia’s three-wicket win over Afghanistan helped them to seal a place for themselves in the semi-finals and remain firm at the third position in the World Cup 2023 Points Table, which was updated after the Australia vs Afghanistan fixture in Mumbai.
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The AUS vs AFG fixture began with Afghanistan showing their batting prowesses. Young opener Ibrahim Zadran scored an unbeaten 129-run knock while there were contributions from the rest of the batters as well – Hashmatullah Shahidi (26), Rahmat Shah (30), Azmatullah (22), Mohammad Nabi (12) and Rahmanullah Gurbaz (21). Rashid Khan amassed a quick 18-ball 35 runs late in the innings to power his side’s overall score to 291 runs in 50 overs.
The 291-run chase was not something that scared the Australians, who have a history of making the most of the big moments. However, Afghanistan’s spin attack made their life difficult and the 291 runs score began looking daunting.
Australia couldn’t start on a strong note with them losing Travis Head in the second over itself. David Warner and Mitchell Marsh, too, couldn’t stick for long and were dismissed in the first powerplay. Soon Marnus Labuschagne, Josh Inglish, Marcus Stoinis and Mitchell Starc were also sent back and Australia were in complete shambles at the Wankhede Stadium at the score of 91/7.
The magic figure of 291 looked far-fetched at this point for the Aussies and the Afghans would have begun celebrating their victory by then. However, a Glenn Maxwell-named cyclone came near the Arabian Sea in Mumbai that blew away Afghanistan’s entire bowling attack.
Maxwell pulled his side out of the chaos initially and again brought the innings back on track with his fine century in 76 deliveries. However, Maxwell’s grit and resolute were not satisfied with his manufacturing innings, he wanted more and only a spot in the semi-finals would be worthy of satiating his will.
The all-rounder, after completing his century, activated his berserk mode as everything he hit went to either for a four or maximum. Afghanistan had no answers to Maxwell’s fiery batting and he went on to score his unbeaten maiden double ton. Maxwell scored a sensational 201 runs knock in just 128 deliveries with the help of 21 boundaries and 10 sixes.
His historic innings took Australia over the rope against Afghanistan, after getting reduced to 91/7 at one point. Not to forget, Maxwell’s innings was aided by skipper Pat Cummins’ 12-run knock which came in 68 deliveries.
It is worth noting that midway through Maxwell’s innings, the batter was all in pain due to cramps and had a semi-functional back. However, despite such a troublesome day in business, Maxwell’s lion-hearted effort never took a backseat throughout his innings.
Australia won the contest against Afghanistan by three wickets and 3.1 overs to spare. Moreover, Australia confirmed a third spot in the World Cup 2023 Points Table, along with a ticket for the semi-finals.
AUS vs AFG: Afghanistan Qualification Scenarios for Semi-Finals World Cup 2023
While at one point it looked Afghanistan’s game to secure a win, that joy was short-lived and Glenn Maxwell turned it into their sorrow. A win in this contest would have placed them in a comfortable position to qualify for the semi-finals, however, qualification scenarios have changed now and there will be a three-way clash between New Zealand, Pakistan and Afghanistan for the fourth spot in the World Cup 2023 semi-finals.
The three-wicket defeat against Australia has kept Afghanistan in the sixth spot in the World Cup 2023 Points Table with eight points. Still, they have one fixture to go – against South Africa.
Afghanistan needs to win their last fixture and hope Pakistan and New Zealand lose their remaining games. This scenario will put Afghanistan at 10 points while the other two teams will remain at eight, hence Afghanistan will qualify for the semi-finals.
However, if Afghanistan, Pakistan and New Zealand manage a victory in their last fixture, or any two sides get a win, then the winning sides will be at 10 points and then the net run rate will come into the picture.
For perspective, Afghanistan’s net run rate is the worst among the three aforementioned teams and they will have to fight it out against dominating South Africa in their last game in order to get a confirmed seat in the World Cup 2023 semi-finals.
World Cup 2023 Points Table Updated after AUS vs AFG
|2||South Africa (Q)||8||6||2||0||0||+1.376||12|
|8||Sri Lanka (E)||8||2||6||0||0||-1.160||4|
World Cup 2023 Most Sixes – Rank 1 – 10
|4||Quinton de Kock||8||8||550||18|
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