A man's plan to rob an ATM machine with explosives backfired, after the blast knocked the would-be-thief his feet.

In CCTV footage released by police in the Australian city of Darwin, the robber, wearing a shirt over his face to mask his appearance, uses a match to light the explosives he attached to the ANZ bank's ATM in the northern suburb of Winnellie.

But the plot backfires when the large explosion he sets off throws the man backwards, knocking him off his feet. He then tears off the shirt around his head before fleeing.

Police released the footage in the hope a member of the public might recognise the man and come forward.