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Warner, Maxwell punish Afghanistan

Warner, Maxwell punish Afghanistan
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 record 417 for six in a group league match 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 bowled five overs, getting 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 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.

Aus break India’s highest WC total record
Australia hit the highest World Cup score in tournament history on Wednesday when they made 417/6 against Afghanistan at the WACA in Perth. The four-time champions went past the previous best of 413/5 made by India against Bermuda in 2007. It was the third 400-plus total at the ICC World Cup 2015 after South Africa twice went through the barrier, 408/5 against the West Indies and 411/4 in the game with Ireland.

Earlier, David Warner made Australia’s highest World Cup individual score of 178 beating the 158 of Matthew Hayden against West Indies at Antigua in 2007. He was just seven short of Shane Watson’s record in all ODIs of 185 not out against Bangladesh in Dhaka in 2011. Warner’s 260-run second wicket partnership with Steve Smith, who went on to 95, was an Australian ODI record beating the 252 of Ricky Ponting and Shane Watson against England at Centurion in 2009. Glenn Maxwell hit a rapid 88 off just 39 balls with the help of six boundaries and seven towering sixes.

SCOREBOARD

Australia innings 
DA Warner c Mohammad Nabi b Shapoor Zadran 178, AJ Finch c Nawroz Mangal b Dawlat Zadran 4, SPD Smith c Najibullah Zadran b Shapoor Zadran 95, GJ Maxwell c Mohammad Nabi b Dawlat Zadran 88, JP Faulkner b Hamid Hassan 7, MR Marsh c Najibullah Zadran b Nawroz Mangal 8, BJ Haddin† not out 20; Extras (b 2, lb 5, w 7, nb 3) 17; Total (6 wickets; 50 overs) 417; FoW 1-14 (Finch, 2.6 ov), 2-274 (Warner, 37.3 ov), 3-339 (Smith, 42.5 ov), 4-382 (Faulkner, 46.1 ov), 5-390 (Maxwell, 47.2 ov), 6-417 (Marsh, 49.6 ov); Bowling Dawlat Zadran 10-1-101-2, Shapoor Zadran 10-0-89-2, Hamid Hassan 10-0-70-1, Mohammad Nabi 10-0-84-0, Samiullah Shenwari 5-0-34-0, Javed Ahmadi 4-0-18-0, Nawroz Mangal 1-0-14-1

Afghanistan innings
Javed Ahmadi c Clarke b Hazlewood 13, Usman Ghani c Faulkner b Johnson 12, Nawroz Mangal c Finch b Johnson 33, Asghar Stanikzai    c Smith b Johnson 4, Samiullah Shenwari c Johnson b Clarke 17, Mohammad Nabi* c Clarke b Maxwell 2, Najibullah Zadran b Starc 24, Afsar Zazai† c †Haddin b Hazlewood 10, Dawlat Zadran b Starc 0, Hamid Hassan c Warner b Johnson 7, Shapoor Zadran not out 0; Extras (b 4, lb 5, w 10, nb 1) 20; Total (all out; 37.3 overs) 142; FoW 1-30 (Usman Ghani, 6.3 ov), 2-32 (Javed Ahmadi, 7.4 ov), 3-46 (Asghar Stanikzai, 10.2 ov), 4-94 (Samiullah Shenwari, 19.4 ov), 5-94 (Nawroz Mangal, 20.1 ov), 6-103 (Mohammad Nabi, 24.2 ov), 7-131 (Najibullah Zadran, 31.1 ov), 8-131 (Dawlat Zadran, 31.5 ov), 9-140 (Afsar Zazai, 36.2 ov), 10-142 (Hamid Hassan, 37.3 ov); Bowling MA Starc 6-0-18-2, JR Hazlewood 8-1-25-2, MG Johnson 7.3-0-22-4, MJ Clarke 5-0-14-1, MR Marsh 3-0-25-0, JP Faulkner 4-0-8-0, GJ Maxwell 4-1-21-1
PTI

PTI

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