All out for 58 at the Gabba
Australia's lowest 20th-century total on home soil. A rain-sodden Gabba wicket was manna from heaven for Gubby Allen and Bill Voce, who skittled the Aussies for only 58 as England recorded a mighty 322-run victory in the first Test in Brisbane. It was also Don Bradman's first Test as captain. In all, Allen and Voce shared 18 of 19 wickets to fall, but from such inauspicious beginnings came one of Australia's greatest victories: they recovered from 0-2 down to take the series 3-2, a fightback unique in Test history.
Some unseemly shenanigans in Port Elizabeth, where Kapil Dev ran out Peter Kirsten for backing up too far before he had bowled. Kapil had warned Kirsten previously on the tour, but that didn't stop all hell breaking loose: Kirsten was fined half his match fee for refusing to leave the crease, but his captain Kepler Wessels got away with offering Kapil some two-fingered advice. It didn't do much for India, though - South Africa eased home by six wickets with 20 balls to spare.
One-day debuts for Michael Slater and Glenn McGrath but Australia were well beaten by South Africa at the MCG. At least both the new boys lived up to the billing: Slater cuffed a 69-ball 73, while McGrath was cuffed around by nobody in a typically thrifty spell of 0 for 28. McGrath also bagged a golden duck, just as he had on his Test debut.
Once upon a time Lance Klusener got in the South African team for his fast-medium swing bowling, and in the Carlton & United day-nighter at the MCG he ran through Australia with 5 for 24 as South Africa surprisingly defended a modest total of 170 with 45 runs to spare. The South Africans have a bit of a thing for the MCG, having beaten Australia six times out of seven there. But the Aussies had the last laugh - they lost this group match but took the best-of-three final series 2-1.
Another brutal display from Viv Richards gave West Indies an easy 80-run victory over Australia in the B&H match at the MCG. Richards walloped an unbeaten 153 off 130 balls - the first individual ODI score over 150 outside England - and added 205 with Des Haynes, a record for any wicket until Richards and Gordon Greenidge went 16 better against India in Jamshedpur in 1983-84.
The Australian Colin McCool, who was born today, was a middle-order dasher and attacking legspinner with a slightly round-arm delivery. His 14 Tests brought a more-than respectable-return: 35 with the bat, 26 with the ball, and no defeats. He also played for Somerset between 1956 and 1960. McCool died in Sydney in 1986.
Only Sri Lanka's third Test victory, and the first match-winning performance from a 20-year-old offspinner called Muttiah Muralitharan. Playing in only his third Test, Murali took 3 for 22 and 4 for 134 - modest by his later standards, but decisive here, particularly as he snared Martin Crowe twice - as New Zealand were well beaten by nine wickets.
A Delhi thriller ended with Pakistan four wickets and India 26 runs short of victory. India didn't appear to have a hope in the second Test when they were skittled for 126 (Sikander Bakht 8 for 69) but they made a fine fist of chasing 390, with Dilip Vengsarkar compiling an unbeaten nine-hour 146. Earlier in the match Dilip Doshi was given run out after he left his crease to complain about the shadow of a tree on the pitch, but Pakistan captain Majid Khan averted a possible riot by withdrawing the appeal.
England have had many a one-eyed selector down the years, but one of their few one-eyed cricketers was born today. John Sharpe lost an eye as a youth but it didn't stop him playing three Tests between 1890 and 1892 and taking 338 first-class wickets, most for Surrey, at a staggering average of 16.06. But he faded as quickly as he had risen to prominence, and his career was over in 1894 after a severe loss of form. He died in Nottingham in 1936.
Birth of allrounder Rumeli Dhar, whose match-winning performances in the 2005 World Cup in South Africa helped India reach the final. She also played a vital role in the Women Twenty20 World Cup in England in 2009, where India reached the semi-final.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
An unorthodox technique, a sharp cricket brain, and supreme belief in his abilities have made Dhoni the batsman he is. An excerpt from Aakash Chopra's book The Insider
The Cricket Monthly: When, like Srinath Perur you're alive to the possibilities a single delivery can hold, it's hard to look elsewhere
TCM August issue
My XI: Mike Brearley picks his favourite captains. In second place: Graeme Smith
Mukul Kesavan: He averages better than Rohit Sharma but still has to fight for a place in the Test side, mostly because he doesn't play ODIs
Scott Oliver: An unremarkable English league stint in 2009 was hardly an indication of his impending rebirth as an international bowler
ESPNcricinfo rates the Australia players involved in the Ashes series
Eleven things the series has brought to light about Cook and Co