On a day when the Barsapara Cricket Ground in Guwahati made its international debut, Australia took on India in the second of the three-match T20I series.
The visitors were subject to a nine-wicket defeat in the first T20I at Ranchi after Jasprit Bumrah and Kuldeep Yadav stifled the Aussie batting line-up.
Looking to make amends for that defeat, stand-in Australia skipper David Warner won the toss and duly elected to field first on account of the dew factor set to kick in later in the game.
On a pitch abundant in moisture, Virat Kohli and his men found the going tough and were bundled out for 118 runs on the final delivery of their innings.
In the end, Australia picked up only their second victory of the tour in comprehensive fashion with an eight-wicket victory to square the series at 1-1.
And on a day when the tourists bounced right back into the series, we look at the key talking points of the match.
Jason Behrendorff did not look out of place in his maiden bow in international cricket.
The 27-year-old was allowed to bowl only one over in the rain-curtailed chase for India but did admirably well, conceding only five runs off it.
The left-arm pacer got a bigger canvas to showcase his talents in Guwahati and obliged in the very first over of the match.
After being carted for two boundaries by Rohit Sharma, Behrendorff struck back immediately with the fourth delivery of the over to catch the India vice-captain plumb on the pads.
He went one step further to put the hosts in all sorts of troubles when two deliveries later he had skipper Kohli caught and bowled for his first duck ever in 48 T20I innings.
The Aussie pacer wasn’t finished as of yet and he returned in his next over to remove Manish Pandey with a beauty of an out-swinger to complete the decimation of India’s top order.
The cherry on the cake was his scalp of Shikhar Dhawan after an excellent running catch from Warner to give the pacer impressive returns of 4-21 off his four overs.
Great spell of bowling by @JDorff5 left arm quicks that swing the ball back into the right handed batters are invaluable!
— Steve Smith (@stevesmith49) October 10, 2017
After Behrendorff’s outstanding spell at the top had put Australia in command, MS Dhoni and Kedar Jadhav were threatening to spark a rearguard action to pull India back into the game.
Australia’s leg-spinner Adam Zampa was having none of that though. He might have been rendered largely ineffective by the Indians in the ODI series but on a Guwahati pitch aiding turn he found excellent rhythm.
Dhoni advanced down the track to the spinner but Zampa’s length delivery turned sharply leaving the Indian wicket-keeper with no chance to get bat on ball as Tim Paine completed a straightforward stumping.
On the other end, Jadhav was looking extremely good amidst India’s batting shambles but Zampa put the brakes on his effort before it could blossom into something deadly.
The 25-year-old spinner outsmarted the Indian batsman with a trademark googly which shattered Jadhav’s stumps after he tried to launch Zampa over his head.
Zampa finished with excellent figures of 2-19 off his four overs.
You don’t get Dhoni stumped often, well done Adam Zampa! #INDvAUS
— Nikhil 🏏 (@CricCrazyNIKS) October 10, 2017
Australia’s reply of the sub-par total set by India got off to the worst possible start after Warner and Finch were dismissed early into the innings.
At 13-2, the match was evenly poised with the hosts sensing a way back into the game against Australia’s fragile middle-order.
Moises Henriques and Travis Head were tasked with the repair job and they executed it brilliantly despite being beaten by the ball on multiple occasions as India’s seamers found movement aplenty.
That storm was weathered and the two batsmen launched into India’s wrist-spinners who were rendered ineffective due to the high volume of dew in outfield.
Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal were both taken for some punishment as Australia romped home without the loss of another wicket with almost five overs to spare.
Henriques notched up second half-century in T20I cricket while Head remained unbeaten on 48 to underline Australia’s dominance.
— Royal Challengers (@RCBTweets) October 10, 2017
The inaugural T20 Global League, the brainchild of Cricket South Africa (CSA), has been postponed to November 2018 instead of its original scheduled start of November 3 later this year.
The franchise based T20 format, was former CSA CEO Haroon Lorgat’s pet project but the administrator parted ways with the board inexplicably in September.
There had been murmurs of the lack of a title sponsor and a television broadcast deal being major stumbling blocks for the T20 cricket’s latest product to get underway.
Last week, acting CSA CEO Thabang Moroe remarked that the first editions of the T20 Global League would run into losses.
On Tuesday, following a meeting of the CSA and the T20 Global League board along with consultations with the franchise owners, it was decided to postpone the inaugural edition to November, 2018.
The CSA then released a statement to that effect but failed to give specifics as to why the league was being postponed as such.
“We have not come to this decision lightly,” commented Moroe.
“Having discussed it with all our stakeholders including the franchise owners, we believe that the interest of the league should be our first priority. We have re-assessed our strategy and believe that postponing the first edition of the T20 Global League to next year will serve us well.
“We will regroup and come back stronger and better. At this time, we also wish to thank all the players, sponsors, broadcast partners, SACA (South African Cricketers Association) and FICA (Federation of International Cricketers) who have committed to the project. We appreciate the continued support of the individuals and organisations who have believed in this tournament.”
Moroe stated that the various franchise owners were in complete support of the decision of postponement.
The T20 Global League has eight various franchises for which the inaugural player draft was held in August this year.
A host of international stars including Jason Roy, Kieron Pollard, Chris Gayle, Eoin Morgan, Fakhar Zaman and many more had been picked up by the various franchises in the player draft held at Cape Town.
Off-spinner Dilruwan Perera finished with five wickets to help Sri Lanka beat Pakistan by 68 runs in the second Test in Dubai on Tuesday and take the series 2-0.
Perera had figures of 5-98 as Pakistan, chasing a tough 317 to win, were bowled out for 248 in the second hour of fifth and final day at Dubai stadium.
Asad Shafiq fought hard during his 112-run knock – his 11th Test hundred — and together with his skipper Sarfraz Ahmed (68) added 173 for the sixth wicket.
But once their partnership was broken Sri Lanka, having already won the first Test by 21 runs in Abu Dhabi, quickly closed in on the victory.
This is Pakistan’s first series defeat at their adopted home of United Arab Emirates (UAE) in seven years. They had won five of the previous nine, with four drawn.
Pakistan were forced to play in the neutral venues of the UAE following the deadly terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan team in Lahore in 2009.
This is also Pakistan’s first home defeat since losing to South Africa 1-0 in 2007, a series held on their grounds, and only the second whitewash in their history.
They previously suffered a 3-0 defeat against Australia, a series also played at neutral venues in Colombo and UAE in 2002.
Shafiq was the ninth man out when he edged paceman Suranga Lakmal to slip where Kusal Mendis took a low diving catch to end all Pakistan’s hopes of an upset win.
Shafiq’s 253-minute knock had 10 boundaries but he again failed to help Pakistan cross the line, just like his 137 in the lost cause against Australia at Brisbane last year.
— Sri Lanka Cricket (@OfficialSLC) October 10, 2017
Pakistan had looked to the overnight partnership of Shafiq and Ahmed to guide them to the winning target after resuming at 198-5, needing another 119 for victory.
Both Shafiq and Ahmed had lucky escapes but Perera finally broke the resistance when Ahmed was caught off a miscued sweep at deep fine leg by Nuwan Pradeep.
Ahmed hit five boundaries during his 130-ball knock.
Shafiq brought up his hundred with a paddled sweep single off Perera and was reprived on the same score when Dimuth Karunaratne dropped a low catch of the same bowler.
Perera then completed his five-wicket haul when he trapped Mohammad Amir – unable to bowl in the second innings with a shin injury – leg before for four, bringing Sri Lanka within three wickets of victory.
Yasir Shah was cleaned up by Rangana Herath while the victory was brought up when Herath had number 10 Wahab Riaz caught gleefully by skipper Dinesh Chandimal for one.
Sri Lanka had gained a decisive 220-run lead by scoring 482 in the first innings on the back of Karunaratne’s career best 196 and then bowled Pakistan out for 262.
Provided by AFP Sport