The 2023 World Cup came to a close on November 19 with Australia clinching the title for a record sixth time. Here are Wisden’s top five batting innings from the World Cup.
Forty individual centuries were scored across 48 games in the World Cup. Some games featured two hundreds, some three, and some even four. And then were some knocks that were less in magnitude but no less in value.
Here, we rank the top five individual batting innings of the 2023 World Cup:
201 (128)* vs Afghanistan, Mumbai
Maxwell played arguably the greatest one-day innings of all time when he single-handedly (and on a single leg) snatched victory from the jaws of obvious defeat against Afghanistan in Mumbai. He came in to bat at 41-4 chasing 292. At one point Australia were 91-7, but Maxwell kept attacking even as he was hamstrung by cramps and spasms and ended the game with a six that also took him to a double hundred.
137 (120) vs India, Final, Ahmedabad
Australia persisted with Head in their World Cup squad despite his injury. He came into the XI midway through the tournament and showed his value in his very first game as well as the knockouts. In the final, chasing 241, Head scored a match-winning 137 off 120, never letting India take control of the game. He was deservedly given Player of the Match, having also got one in the semi-final against Australia.
101 (116) vs Australia, Semi-final, Kolkata
Miller came into bat at No.6 with South Africa in big trouble at 24-4 in their semi-final against Australia at the Eden Gardens. From a dead and buried situation, he gave South Africa hope, taking them to 212 and scoring his sixth ODI ton in the process. The fact that it came on a tough surface after a staggering collapse in a semi-final, arguably makes it his finest knock.
126 (81)* vs New Zealand, Bengaluru
Dropped from the XI after Pakistan’s first game in the World Cup, Fakhar stormed back mid-way through the tournament, scoring 81 off 74 against Bangladesh. His best, however, was yet to come. Against New Zealand in a must-win encounter in Bengaluru, he put on a show. Chasing 402, he took Pakistan off to a rapid start and scored a 63-ball hundred that helped Pakistan win the game on DLS.
80 (57) vs England, Delhi
Gurbaz got Afghanistan off to a flyer against England in Delhi. He stitched a 114-run opening partnership with Ibrahim Zadran in 16.4 overs, of which Zadran scored only 28 off 48 balls. Gurbaz was run out after a horrible mix-up with Hashmatullah Shahidi, but his onslaught set Afghanistan up for a competitive total of 284, which they eventually defended with ease against the defending champions to win their first World Cup match against a Full Member.
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