Glenn Maxwell smashed a six off the last ball to bring up a 58-ball century and give Australia a controversial five-wicket Twenty20 win over England at Blundstone Arena on Wednesday evening.
Maxwell – who also took three wickets – could have been dismissed twice in a typically highlight-filled innings as Australia chased down a victory target of 156 with nine balls to spare in Hobart.
The Victorian all-rounder was first dropped on 40 by Alex Hales before he looked to be out on 59 when he skied to Jason Roy in the deep.
Roy and his teammates celebrated the catch but the umpires, who indicated they thought it was out, referred to the third umpire for confirmation.
And that was not forthcoming, with reviews proving inconclusive and giving Maxwell another life, to the disbelief of the Nine Network commentators.
“This is 100 per cent out,” former Australia captain Michael Clarke said.
“He [Roy] has clearly got his fingers under the ball.”
He later added: “The umpire has given him not out which I can’t believe. That is clearly out.”
Maxwell ended up anchoring Australia’s successful run chase, guiding the hosts to an exciting victory.
Watch Maxwell bring up his century
HOW GOOD WAS THAT?! 💯
— cricket.com.au (@CricketAus) February 7, 2018
David Warner’s side have now won both of its matches in the Twenty20 tri-series involving England and New Zealand.
It could have been so different, though, with only Maxwell and D’Arcy Short (30) passing double figures for Australia.
England, who made just 9-155 from their 20 overs, bowled well, with left-arm quick David Willey (3-28) particularly impressive.
Willey removed Warner (four) and Chris Lynn (zero) in the first over and although Maxwell and Short added 78 runs in quick time for the third wicket, Australia stuttered from 2-82 to 5-127.
Maxwell, who hammered 10 fours and four sixes, stepped up when required, though, taking 16 off the penultimate over before, with the scores tied, he brought up his milestone with a six that just cleared the mid-wicket fence.
“It was nice to get one over the rope and finish the job,” he said afterwards.
“For us to start this series the way we have had is outstanding.
“We haven’t had a lot of success in T20 cricket for the last few years.”
On the catch that wasn’t, he said: “I couldn’t really tell but there was obviously a lot of the ball showing from where we were.
“So we just thought we’d stay there, stick around and see what the umpires said.
“Obviously the third umpire is there to do his job and he obviously saw the ball … some part of it touching the ground.”
England captain Eoin Morgan said: “From where I was at cover, it looked out.
“It does look 50-50 on calls like that on the big screen but ultimately the third umpire is always right.
“Glenn played extremely well and took the game away from us. In order to win the game, we had to get him out.”
Earlier, England raced to 2-88 off nine overs with Dawid Malan (50), Hales (22) and Morgan (22) all contributing quick runs.
Crafty bowling by spinners Maxwell (3-10) and Ashton Agar (2-15) dragged England back, though, and they fell from 3-109 to 9-137.
That meant that despite late contributions from Chris Jordan (16 not out) and Mark Wood (five not out), England left its bowlers with too much to do.
“We ended up being about 20-25 [runs] short,” Morgan added.
Australia will play England again on Saturday evening at the MCG.