Cricket Australia (CA) has announced the one-off Test against Afghanistan and the ODI series against New Zealand have been postponed due to the ongoing impact of the coronavirus pandemic. 

Australia were due to face Afghanistan in the longest format for the first time in Perth in November, but that one-off game will not go ahead as planned. 

The rescheduled IPL season - which is due to finish in early November - created issues over Australian players quarantining upon their return from the Twenty20 tournament in the United Arab Emirates. 

New Zealand's limited-overs tour in January 2021 has also been called off amid "the challenges around international travel and quarantine restrictions" caused by the global health pandemic. 

CA hopes to find new dates for the fixtures in the coming years, with the postponements meaning India will be the only international side to visit Australia during the 2020-21 season.

"Cricket Australia looks forward to working with our good friends at the Afghanistan Cricket Board and New Zealand Cricket to deliver the matches at a time when, hopefully, the restrictions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic have eased," CA's interim CEO Nick Hockley said in a statement.

"We all worked incredibly hard to make the series happen this summer, but the challenges around international travel and quarantine restrictions ultimately convinced all parties that the series would need to be played at a later date.

"CA looks forward to welcoming the Indian men's team for a full schedule of matches this summer in what promises to be an incredible contest across all three formats.

"CA would also like to take this opportunity to thank our wonderful partners for their understanding and support as we have navigated the complexities of hosting international sport during a pandemic to deliver a thrilling summer across men's and women's cricket at international and domestic level."

Australia are due to face India in a four-Test series, as well as three one-dayers and a trio of Twenty20 fixtures. Details over the schedule are yet to be confirmed.

Glenn Maxwell said he had "freedom" to attack after delivering a stunning century to guide Australia past England in the third ODI.

With Australia chasing 303 for victory in Manchester on Wednesday, Maxwell arrived at the crease with the tourists reeling at 73-5 in the series decider.

But Maxwell (108 off 90 balls) and Alex Carey (106 off 114) combined for a 212-run partnership as Australia reached the target with two balls to spare.

Maxwell, who scored his second ODI century and first since 2015, said he felt free to play his aggressive game with Australia in such a poor position.

"I was probably thinking that we haven't got much to lose so I had a bit of freedom I suppose to try and take the bowling on and put a bit more pressure on them," he told reporters.

"I thought if I could make the most of that short boundary as much as I could early on and just back my bat swing. There was a fair bit of a breeze heading that way as well so I just tried to get it up in the air and I was able to get a couple pretty clean early on in the innings and then hopefully start to build a partnership with Alex.

"I knew once I started to get into the innings they would start to bowl a bit differently to me and I might be able to cash in on some loose balls, but everything pretty much went to plan.

"The way our partnership built was outstanding so it was good fun out there and I'm really happy to get that result."

Jonny Bairstow's 112 had earlier helped England to 302-7 after they elected to bat first at Old Trafford.

England captain Eoin Morgan accepted Australia were simply too good for his side.

"We were still in the game. When you break big partnerships and the ball is offering a bit, you're never out of the game," he said.

"But Australia were too good for us … we were right in the game but Carey and Maxwell played outstandingly well."

Glenn Maxwell and Alex Carey scored magnificent centuries as Australia claimed a three-wicket victory over England in a thrilling ODI series decider at Old Trafford.

Australia had been reduced to 73-5 in response to England's 302-7 and looked to be on the brink of defeat, but they were rescued by their highest-ever ODI sixth-wicket partnership of 212.

Maxwell hit seven maximums as he racked up 108 runs from 90 balls – his highest score in the 50-over format – while Carey added 106 for his maiden ton.

Both players were dismissed as part of a dramatic finale, but Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins got the 10 runs required from the final over as the tourists won with just two balls to spare.

Earlier, an astonishing start to Wednesday's play saw England lose Jason Roy and Joe Root in the first two deliveries of the day, as Starc set about dismantling England's top order.

Yet Jonny Bairstow (112) led a superb counter-attack that had not only given the hosts a fighting chance, but put Australia on the back foot.

Chris Woakes and Root took two wickets apiece in the early stages of Australia's reply as England took control.

But Maxwell and Carey's heroics flipped the script and meant it was Australia who won 2-1, avenging their loss by the same scoreline in the trio of T20I matches.

Australia suffered another batting collapse as England fought back from the brink to draw level in their ODI series with a brilliant 24-run victory at Old Trafford.

Eoin Morgan's side came back in thrilling fashion in the opening Twenty20 against Australia earlier in September, and the tourists snatched defeat from what looked set at one point to be a comfortable triumph in Manchester.

Four wickets – one from Jofra Archer (3-34) and three from Chris Woakes (3-32) – in a fantastic five-over spell in the middle of Australia's innings reduced Justin Langer's side from 142-2 to 147-6.

Australia's collapse came on the back of a strong start from Aaron Finch (73), whose side had ripped through England's top order after Morgan elected to bat first.

Adam Zampa (3-36) was the pick of Australia's bowling attack, which had England on the ropes until a stand of 76 between Tom Curran (37) and Adil Rashid (35 not out) helped the hosts finish on 231-9.

Yet despite Finch and Marnus Labuschagne (48) looked to be ticking Australia towards a series win, England rallied – Sam Curran (3-35) wrapping up the victory after Woakes and Archer dismantled the tourists' middle-order.

 

England captain Eoin Morgan conceded his side's poor batting display in the opening 10 overs ultimately cost them in the first ODI against Australia.

Australia earned a 19-run triumph at Old Trafford on Friday, as England failed to hunt down what would have been a record ODI run chase of 295 for the Manchester venue.

Jason Roy and Joe Root both fell in the first 10 overs, while Morgan and Jos Buttler struggled.

Jonny Bairstow and Sam Billings, who scored his maiden ODI century, offered some gallant resistance, but it was not enough to stop Australia – who had Mitchell Marsh and Glenn Maxwell to thank – taking the lead in the three-match series.

"It probably got away from us in the first 10 overs with the bat," Morgan told Sky Sports.

"They bowled outstandingly well, they didn't give us much to get away with.

"I thought we did a reasonable job with the ball, a reasonable score we could chase down with a few partnerships.

"Jonny and Sam, keeping us in the game so long, if we could have extended that partnership past the 40th over we could really have been in an commanding position, but full credit to Australia, they outplayed us today.

"I think they did well. You can always be greedy and want more, but I think we did well too. An area of our game we're looking to improve is taking wickets early and we did that. To be in that position was great. An outstanding performance would have been to continue to take wickets but we didn't."

Billings has made the most of a chance to shine in England's white-ball series this year and capped a fine individual display with an outstanding 118. 

Morgan said of the Kent batsman: "Sam's opportunities over the last four years have been extremely limited and sporadic at times, but to come in and still show hunger and desire in his training and then to come in and get his maiden one-day hundred today is outstanding. It shows a lot of resilience and a lot of character.

"When Ben Stokes is missing he leaves a big hole and we tend to have a lot of players vying for places who bat in the top four for their county.

"So batting at six is an area we need to improve our depth and Sam has added to that today."

Australia took first blood in their ODI series with England as Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell and Josh Hazlewood shone in a 19-run win at Old Trafford, where Sam Billings' maiden international century was in vain.

Without Steve Smith – who suffered a blow to the head in training on Thursday – Australia still managed to set a target of 295, leaving England facing a record run chase in an ODI at Old Trafford to secure victory.

Marsh (73) and Maxwell (77) were in superb form with the bat, with their century stand taking the tourists from 123-5 to 249-6.

Maxwell eventually succumbed to an excellent ball from Jofra Archer, who had dismissed David Warner (6) with a magnificent delivery early on.

Marsh was pinned lbw by Mark Wood as Australia lost late wickets, though hosts England were then reeling at 57-4 in the 17th over of their reply, with Hazlewood (3-26) in fine fettle.

Jonny Bairstow (84) and Billings (118) took the fight back to Australia, yet England ultimately fell short on 275-9 as the world champions succumbed to a second defeat from the last three 50-over meetings with their great rivals.

Archer's wicked bowling sent Warner's stumps flying in the fourth over, and Wood had Aaron Finch (16) walking soon after when Australia's captain clipped an edge to Jos Buttler.

Wood and Buttler combined again to dismiss Marcus Stoinis for 43 in the 16th over, with Adil Rashid dismissing Marnus Labuschagne (21) lbw soon after.

Alex Carey fared little better against Rashid four overs later, yet Marsh and Maxwell steadied the innings.

While Marsh ticked over, Maxwell wasted little time in getting into his stride, and moved to 50 two balls after hitting Rashid for a huge six over midwicket.

Archer was the recipient of similar treatment for back-to-back sixes in the 44th over, yet he had his revenge the next ball when Maxwell dragged a slower delivery onto his stumps.

Pat Cummins (9) fell in Archer's next over, with Wood sending Marsh back to the pavilion and Chris Woakes dismissing Alex Zampa (5), before Mitchell Starc hit a six from the last ball of the innings as Australia finished on 264-9.

Hazlewood started impressively with the ball, taking a wonderful one-handed catch to dismiss Jason Roy (3) from his own bowling in the fourth over, and the paceman had his second wicket when Joe Root edged to Carey on one.

Two fours and a big six from Eoin Morgan (23) got England back on track, though the home captain soon picked out Maxwell from a Zampa delivery.

Zampa had a second wicket when Labuschagne took a smart catch to dismiss Buttler, and it was then that Bairstow and Billings began to unleash some thumping shots.

Bairstow, after hitting four fours and four sixes, was out in the 36th over – Hazlewood racing around in the outfield to take a fantastic diving catch – with Moeen Ali following quickly.

With Billings still in, England had hope, and despite losing Woakes and Rashid, he played some inventive shots as he moved beyond 100.

However, with 28 needed from the final over, England did not have enough fire-power – Marsh having the final say as he ended Billings' defiance to wrap up an impressive win.

Former England batsman Ian Bell is to retire from professional cricket at the end of the season.

Bell is regarded as one of England's classiest batsmen of his generation, scoring 7,727 runs in 118 Test matches and 5,416 in 161 ODIs.

The 38-year-old last played for his country in 2015 and will call it quits at the end of the campaign with Warwickshire, where he made his debut in 1999 as a 17-year-old.

"My body simply can't keep up with the demands of the game to the standard of which I expect of myself," Bell wrote on Twitter.

"It's true when they say you know when the time's right, and unfortunately, my time is now.

"To have been part of an England Test team to reach number one in the world, to win five Ashes series, one of them as player of the series, and an away series in India is some return for a young lad who simply dreamt of batting at Edgbaston.

"Thank you to all the cricket fans for the most unbelievable support I've had throughout my career."

Toe and knee injuries meant he missed much of last season and Bell is now aiming to pursue a career in coaching.

His 13,331 international runs are the fourth highest among English batsmen, while he scored 22 international centuries.

For Warwickshire, Bell has over 20,000 first-class runs with a high score of 262 not out and almost 14,000 in limited-overs cricket.

Eoin Morgan is relishing being able to field a near full-strength side in the Twenty20 International series against Australia and says the door is still open for Joe Root in the shortest format.

Morgan was unable to call upon the likes of Jos Buttler, Jofra Archer, Mark Wood and Sam Curran, who are back in the squad after being in the bio-secure bubble for the Tests against West Indies and Pakistan.

An ODI series win over Ireland and the 1-1 T20 draw against Pakistan gave other players an opportunity to stake a claim with the T20 World Cup in India to come next year.

Jason Roy misses the T20s versus Australia due to a side strain but could return in the 50-over format, while Ben Stokes remains with his family in New Zealand after his father was diagnosed with brain cancer in January.

Morgan has welcomed the return of some of his World Cup winners ahead of a three-match T20 series that starts in Southampton on Friday.

The white-ball captain, who confirmed Buttler will open the batting with Jonny Bairstow despite Tom Banton impressing against Pakistan, said: "For the first time this summer we are seeing the majority of our best team on the park and that's great.

"Bar injury and absent players, which is only a couple, we are at full strength. That is a nice place to be.

"We don't have to pick our best XI every series that we play because we can't put all our eggs in one basket because we need 16 or 17 players in the lead up to a World Cup, all vying for selection in the best 15.

"We found in the lead in to the 50-overs World Cup that was the best position to be in."

 

There was no place for Root in the T20 squad, but Morgan says the Test skipper can still force his way back in.

"Yes, we have had that conversation with Joe and he certainly does have a future. The conversation was surrounding Joe not getting in the best XI at the moment," said Morgan.

"We didn't want to carry him around and him not play any cricket. Joe wants to play T20 cricket and put his best case forwards particularly when he doesn't have a lot of opportunity to go back to Yorks and play T20 cricket.

"We felt it was a really good opportunity for him to do that."

Joe Root has been left out of England's squad for the Twenty20 International encounters with Australia, while Jason Roy will hope to prove his fitness to return in the ODI series.

Root has not played for his country in the shortest format since May 2019 and has been overlooked for the three-match T20 series, which starts at the Rose Bowl on Friday.

The Test captain has made an impressive start to the T20 Blast back in Yorkshire colours, having stated he has not given up on forcing his way back into squad for the T20 World Cup in India next year, but said he was realistic over his chances.

Root has been named in a 13-man squad for the ODI series, which follows the T20s, versus Aaron Finch's side at Old Trafford.

Roy will sit out the T20s due to a left side strain that has kept him out of the ongoing series against Pakistan, but will remain in the bio-secure bubble with a view to showing he can feature in the 50-over format.

Test players Jofra Archer, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran and Mark Wood are back in both squads, while Chris Woakes is set to play in the ODI series.

Ben Stokes remains absent after flying to New Zealand to be with his family, as his father Ged has brain cancer. Fellow all-rounder David Willey was overlooked for both squads despite being man of the series in the ODIs against Ireland. 

National selector Ed Smith, said: "These two series against Australia provide an exciting end to the summer. We have selected strong squads.

"We are also continuing to develop depth in preparation for the upcoming T20 World Cups."

 

England T20 squad: Eoin Morgan (captain), Moeen Ali, Jofra Archer, Jonny Bairstow, Tom Banton, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Joe Denly, Chris Jordan, Dawid Malan, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood.

Reserves: Liam Livingstone, Saqib Mahmood.

England ODI squad: Eoin Morgan (captain), Moeen Ali, Jofra Archer, Jonny Bairstow, Tom Banton, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Tom Curran, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.

Reserves: Joe Denly, Saqib Mahmood.

Australia paceman Mitchell Starc backed "huge talent" Riley Meredith to take his chance in England.

Meredith is one of three uncapped players in Australia's squad for three Twenty20s and three ODIs beginning next month.

The 24-year-old has taken 27 wickets at 23.03 in T20s, while his average in List A cricket is 36.80.

Starc praised Meredith and hopes the paceman can step up in four practice matches before the T20 opener against England on September 4.

"I've obviously seen him play some cricket and played the [Sheffield] Shield game against Tassie that he played in last year and he bowled really well, I think he got 'Smithy' [Steve Smith] out twice in that game so he's a huge talent," he said.

"There's been a bit of chat around him for a couple of domestic seasons now and I'm sure he's really excited, along with the other two newcomers to Australian cricket to get underway.

"He bowls fast. I think that's a great thing about him, he can just run in and express himself with the ball now and hopefully he can do so in these practice games and if he gets his chance in Australian colours I think he'll take it with both hands. So, a good chance for another one of the fast-bowling group to come and learn and express his skills on the world stage."

England are the top-ranked ODI team and won the Cricket World Cup on home soil last year.

Starc hopes Australia can deliver against England, who beat them in the semi-finals of the tournament.

"They're still the world champions so, look, they obviously had a game plan in place in the lead-up to the World Cup and they've carried on the way they play their cricket," he said.

"We played them three times during that period and we happened to beat them two out of three but we obviously saved our worst for last.

"It's now a chance for us to talk about the way we want to approach our cricket heading into the 2023 World Cup. We've got a squad of 21 and now we've got a chance to showcase that against the current world champions so hopefully we're in for an exciting series and hopefully one that we can come out on top of."

Jacques Kallis, Lisa Sthalekar and Zaheer Abbas were inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame on Sunday.

Legendary South Africa all-rounder Kallis is the fourth player from his country to receive the honour, while Sthalekar is the 27th Australian and Abbas the sixth from Pakistan.

The great Kallis is the only player to score at least 10,000 runs and take at 250 wickets or more in both Test and ODI cricket.

Kallis is South Africa's leading Test run-scorer and the third-highest from any nation, while he also took 577 wickets for the Proteas in all formats during a stellar career.

"It's a great honour to be inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame. It is something that I never expected when I started playing," said Kallis.

"I certainly did not play the game for any accolades or anything like that, I only wanted to win the games for whoever I was playing for."

Gifted all-rounder Sthalekar was a key member of the Australia side that won the Women's World Cup in 2005 and 2013, as well as the T20 World Cup in 2010 and 2012.

She topped both the ODI batting and bowling rankings and goes down as the first woman to as score 1,000 runs and take 100 wickets in ODIs

Sthalekar said: "I am deeply humbled to receive this honour. Never in my wildest dreams did I believe that I would ever get to join such an illustrious group of players."

Abbas was known as the 'Asian Bradman' due to the style in which he piled on the runs in the 1970s and 80s.

He is the only player from Asia to have scored at least 100 first-class centuries.

"I feel privileged and truly humbled to be inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame of the class of 2020. I am excited to be in the midst of other illustrious cricketers," said Abbas of becoming one of 93 players to join the Hall of Fame.

Josh Philippe is one of three uncapped players included in Australia's squad after their ODI and Twenty20 tour of England was confirmed to go ahead.

Philippe, Daniel Sams and Riley Meredith were included in a 21-man touring party.

Australia named a preliminary squad last month amid uncertainty over the tour due to the coronavirus pandemic, but it was confirmed on Friday the matches would go ahead in September.

Philippe scored 487 runs at an average of 37.46 for the Sydney Sixers during the 2019-20 Big Bash League, while the Sydney Thunder's Sams (30) was the leading wicket-taker.

Meredith, meanwhile, took 10 wickets at 13.70 in six games for the Hobart Hurricanes.

Australia will fly to the United Kingdom later this month before a three-game T20 series starts on September 4, while the ODIs are scheduled to begin a week later.

Glenn Maxwell returns to the squad, replacing D'Arcy Short, while Marcus Stoinis was also recalled.

"It's a squad with great depth and a sprinkle of some exceptional young players," Australia national selector Trevor Hohns said. 

"We are very pleased with the final group which was chosen with a view to continuing our recent form in T20 cricket and the longer term goal of returning to the top in the 50-over game.

"The top and middle order is extremely strong, there's plenty of accomplished all-rounders, fantastic fast bowling depth and spin options. The squad also has the cover required to meet all contingencies given replacements are not available for this tour if injury or illness were to occur.

"The NSP [National Selection Panel] believes this squad, along with those who missed out and others who perform well in domestic cricket, offers a solid platform for success in the white-ball game going forward."

Australia senior assistant coach Andrew McDonald will not travel with the squad due to a commitment to coach the Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League.

Australia: Aaron Finch, Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Riley Meredith, Josh Philippe, Daniel Sams, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa.

Rohit Sharma has distanced himself from comparisons to former India captain MS Dhoni which were made by Suresh Raina.

Speaking on the Super Over podcast, Raina likened Rohit's leadership to that of Dhoni, who captained India in over 300 matches across all formats and led the team to all three ICC white-ball trophies during his tenure between 2007 and 2016.

Though Virat Kohli succeeded Dhoni as India's skipper, Raina talked up Rohit's demeanour and described him as "the next MS Dhoni for the Indian cricket team".

When that was put to Rohit in an online question-and-answer session, the opener said on a Twitter video: "Yes, I heard about that comment from Suresh Raina.

"MS Dhoni is one of a kind and nobody can be like him and I believe comparisons should not be made like that, every individual is different and has his strengths and weaknesses."

Rohit, 33, has led Mumbai Indians to a record four Indian Premier League titles and has also captained India in 10 ODIs and 19 Twenty20 internationals, winning 23 of those 29 matches.

"Around him, players enjoy the intensity, they enjoy his aura," former India batsman Raina had said.

"When you enjoy the aura of a player, you like to be positive and I think that is what he is good at.

"MS Dhoni was brilliant. He [Rohit] has won more [IPL] trophies than MS, but they both are very similar. Both of them, as captains, like to listen.

"When your captain is listening, you can solve a lot of problems, you can solve the mental aspects of the players. So in my book, they both are wonderful.

"I have seen [Rohit], he is calm, he likes to listen. He likes to give confidence to the players and on top of that, he likes to lead from the front.

"When a captain leads from the front and, at the same time, he gives respect to the dressing-room atmosphere, you know you have it all."

Joe Denly will miss the rest of England's ODI series with Ireland due to back problems.

The batsman has been struggling with back spasms and was not involved in the first match on Thursday, when England claimed a six-wicket victory.

The England and Wales Cricket Board announced on Friday that Liam Livingstone would take Denly's place in the 14-man squad.

"Joe Denly has been ruled out the Royal London Series against Ireland after suffering back spasms in training on Wednesday," the ECB statement said.

"The Kent batsman has been replaced in the 14-man England ODI squad by Lancashire's Liam Livingstone.

"Livingstone has represented England in two IT20s and would make his ODI debut if selected in one of the final two matches with Ireland."

The second ODI takes place at the Rose Bowl on Saturday, with the third set for next Tuesday.

David Willey's bowling set the tone for a comprehensive six-wicket England win in Thursday's ODI with Ireland, while Sam Billings impressed at the crease as a 173 target was reached with little fuss in the series opener.

England's Test players were unavailable due to their endeavours against West Indies, meaning an entirely different ODI XI was given the chance to prove their credentials, and Willey certainly rose to the occasion.

The 29-year-old was left out of England's World Cup squad last year, but in Southampton he provided a reminder of his qualities with an exceptional 5-30, his first five-wicket haul in ODI cricket.

It did not take Willey long to find his groove, taking out Paul Stirling (2) and Ireland captain Andrew Balbirnie (3) in the first three overs.

Three successive fours – which were soon followed by another pair – from Gareth Delany (22) at least gave Ireland a little momentum, but he too fell victim to Willey having just seen Mahmood (2-36) deal with Harry Tector (0), and Lorcan Tucker (0) followed them just two balls later in the sixth.

Curtis Campher (59 not out) and Kevin O'Brien (22) steadied the ship with some conservative batting, staving off the England attack for 14 full overs, but the latter eventually paid the price for opting to alter their mentality.

Like Tector and Tucker, Simi Singh returned to the pavilion without a run to his name, and although Andy McBrine's solid 40 helped he and Campher put up a decent defence, Ireland were eventually skittled in the 45th over when Jason Roy caught Craig Young to secure Willey's fifth wicket.

England's chase did not begin particularly emphatically, as they found themselves at 36-2 after the sixth over – Roy (24) and Jonny Bairstow (2) the early casualties.

Tucker then caught Vince (25) off Young in the 10th over, but England's wobble effectively ended with his replacement, Billings, who impressed with an unbeaten 67, which included 11 fours.

England lost Tom Banton (11), but captain Eoin Morgan (36 not out) came in and ultimately sealed a comfortable victory as he blasted Singh's delivery for six – the hosts reaching 174 runs in the 28th over with six wickets to spare.

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