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Recent Match Report – Australia vs India 4th Test 2020

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Updates, analysis and colour from the third day of the fourth Test

Welcome to our live report of the third day of the Australia-India Test from Brisbane. Join us for updates, analysis and colour. You can find our traditional ball-by-ball commentary here

9.10am: Another crucial first hour

They always are, and India, two down and 307 behind at the moment, have quite a task on their hands. There’s plenty of pace and bounce here at the Gabba, though not a whole lot of seam movement, so it should be a balanced contest between bat and ball. It will be interesting to see if the cracks open up a little more today as well. Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane are at the crease, after Rohit Sharma fell in polarising fashion. He copped a lot of criticism for the shot he played, having looked so good while settling in, but Sidharth Monga offers some balance in this piece.



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Sheffield Shield 2020-21 – Mitchell Swepson set to miss the rest of the season due to stress fracture in his neck

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Scans revealed a rare stress fracture in his C6 vertebrae meaning an extended period on the sidelines for the legspinner

Queensland and Australia legspinner Mitchell Swepson looks set to miss the remainder of Australia’s domestic summer after being diagnosed with a stress fracture in his neck.

Swepson missed Queensland’s Sheffield Shield and Marsh Cup matches against Tasmania after developing neck pain in the back end of the BBL season. Scans revealed he had stress fracture in the C6 vertebrae.

Martin Love, former Australia Test batsman and now Queensland’s Sport Science and Medicine Manager, said the injury was extremely rare and would require a very cautious approach in terms of treatment and recovery.

“It is certainly not a common injury with spinners for instance, and so while Australian Cricket has a great deal of information about managing stress fractures in fast bowlers, it is not quite as clear cut in Mitch’s case,” Love said.

“We will work closely with Mitch and Cricket Australia to manage his recovery. We are encouraged by the successful returns of many bowlers who have had to deal with back stress fractures during their careers so hopefully, this case proves relatively straightforward.”



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Sheffield Shield, 2020-21 – Nathan Lyon faces a winter at home for the first time in his career

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The offspinner won’t head to Hampshire in the off-season but still holds out hope of a WTC final

There aren’t many firsts left in professional cricket for Nathan Lyon.

But after bringing up 100 Tests against India he faces the prospect of a full five-month pre-season in Australia ahead of next year’s Ashes for the first time in his professional career.

Lyon had the opportunity to head to Hampshire for the 2021 County Championship season after his contract was cancelled for 2020 but he turned down the offer due to uncertainty over the pandemic.

If Australia miss out on the World Test Championship final in June, then they won’t play Test cricket again until late in the year with the Ashes or possibily a match against Afghanistan. Australia have a limited-overs tour of the West Indies and the T20 World Cup in India later in the year, but Lyon hasn’t played an ODI since the 2019 World Cup and a T20I since 2018, although he was part of the squad that travelled to England for the limited-overs tour last year.

Lyon does still aspire to be part of Australia’s limited-overs teams but should he not be selected for any tour he could spend the entire winter at home for the first time since his professional debut in 2011.



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Match Preview – New Zealand vs Australia, Australia in New Zealand 2020/21, 2nd T20I

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New Zealand will hope for more from their top three but the middle order, led by Devon Conway, offers significant depth

Big Picture

Australia will need to rebound quickly in the second match of the series having been played off the park at Hagley Oval. It looked good at the start when they claimed three wickets inside the powerplay, but Devon Conway‘s masterful 99 lifted New Zealand to a hefty total and then they claimed four wickets inside the fielding restrictions.

The fact this fixture, which marks Dunedin’s first T20I, is a day game is likely to mean less of a fluctuation in conditions as the match plays out although if there is a chance of swing Tim Southee and Trent Boult are as good as anyone at finding it.

The Australians refused to use their two weeks of managed isolation as any excuse for the opening performance – they had been able to train to a high level in that period – but will hope that a proper match has allowed them to get into gear. The advantage of this being a five-game series is that there is a chance to bounce back.

Jhye Richardson’s return to international cricket was promising and Mitchell Marsh looked in decent form with the bat, but other than it was slim pickings from Christchurch. New Zealand will hope for a batter output from their top three, but the form of their middle order – led by Conway – means they have the depth and confidence to rebuild.



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