‘Ball of the century’ stuns Aussie, leaves cricket in awe
Alyssa Healy was castled by a delivery hailed as the new “ball of the century”, but Australia ultimately clinched victory over India in the second T20 to take out the multi-format series.
The highlight of the Gold Coast fixture, which Australia won by four wickets with five balls to spare as they hunted down India’s 118, was produced by India quick Shikya Pandey on the second ball of the hosts’ chase.
Healy picked up a four off the first ball of the innings and was walking back to the pavilion after the next, having been brought undone by a delivery that had “come back from miles outside off stump”, in the words of Seven’s Andy Maher.
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Pandey started the ball about 40cm outside off stump and had it deviate back through swing and seam to clip the top of the pegs and send the bails flying.
Watch the epic delivery in the video above!
As cricket podcaster Andrew Menczel took to Twitter to declare “a new ball of the century”, Richard Hinds of The Age gave an early prediction for the summer of cricket.
“Won’t be a better ball bowled this summer,” Hinds posted on Twitter.
Cricket reporter Melinda Farrell tweeted: “What a freaking sensational ball!”.
AAP sports journalist Scott Bailey was staggered at the delivery.
“I’m still trying to work out any way in which this is playable… and I’ve decided it’s not,” Bailey tweeted.
And former ABC sports broadcaster Glenn Mitchell wrote on Twitter: “I defy anyone to play that… Incredible delivery by Shikya Pandey to Alyssa Healy”.
Aussies seal series in thrilling T20 against India
India would have made significantly fewer runs if not for the lower-order hitting of Pooja Vastrakar, who walked to the middle at 6-61 and peeled off an unbeaten 37 runs from 26 balls.
Australia then encountered their own troubles in reply to India’s 9-118, falling to 4-46 when Ellyse Perry was dismissed during the 10th over.
But Tahlia McGrath, in another stellar knock amid a glimmering run of form, arrived at the crease and struck 42 not out from 33 balls to steer Australia to victory.
Australia and India will square off in the final match of the multi-format series when they meet in a T20 on the Gold Coast tonight.
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