The rivalry between England and Australia continues to be heated as they fight to set a record and declare who’s the best in Test Cricket. The Ashes is a Test Cricket series that involves the two countries. Its name came from a satirical obituary published in The Sporting Times, a British newspaper in 1882 when Australia won its first Test on English soil. The obituary sarcastically stated that the English cricket died and the body would be cremated and the ashes taken to Australia.
Cricket is a complicated game with its many rules and laws, but it’s not a hindrance for spectators to enjoy it. It became one of the most popular sports globally, evident by the one billion people who watched the championship match between India and Pakistan in 2015.
The English invented the game, and later on, spread it to their colonies through British soldiers who were stationed there. The Brits dominated cricket, but their colonies began getting better over the years with the thought that this was their best chance to get back to their colonizers.
There are ten cricket tournaments worldwide. The ICC Cricket World Cup, ICC Champions Trophy, T20 World Cup, Ashes Series, CLT20, Indian Premier League, NatWest Series, Border-Gavaskar Trophy, Asia Cup, and the Commonwealth Bank Series.
According to the ICC or International Cricket Council, the number one team ranking overall is Australia, followed by New Zealand and India, with England coming only in fourth. To this day, Australia has dominated the sport, so you know how you should strategize on your cricket betting.
At the international level, there are three formats of how cricket is played:
- Test matches.The traditional game that’s settled in a five-day format with two innings each.
- One Day Internationals (ODIs). The format used in the World Cup with 50 overs per side in one innings match.
- Twenty20 Internationals (T20). Competed in three hours with a format of 20 overs per side, the shortest and fastest form of the game.
The Ashes use the Test format, with the champion getting a tiny terracotta trophy, four-inch tall, believed to contain the ashes of a burnt cricket bail. A cricket bail is a small stick resting atop the three stumps to form the wicket.
The trophy is shaped like an urn, an apt symbolism, with the following words encrypted on it:
When Ivo goes back with the urn, the urn;
Studds, Steel, Read, and Tylecote return, return;
The welkin will ring loud,
The great crowd will feel proud,
Seeing Barlow and Bates with the urn, the urn;
And the rest coming home with the urn
The Ivo referred to in the urn is Ivo Bligh, the Captain of England when Australia won in 1882. Ivo Bligh travelled to Australia on his quest to return the Ashes. There, he met the woman Florence Morphy who, along with other Melbourne women, presented Ivo Bligh a small urn after winning two of the three Tests on the tour. Murphy would become his wife and the future Countess of Darnley.
The first Test international match between England and Australia took place in 1877, but the Ashes’ first game series officially counted in 1882. Australia has the most Test wins with 140 out of 340 matches played for 70 series. Australia won in 34 series while England won 32 with six series in a draw.
The greatest batsman of all time, Sir Donald Bradman, or The Don, an Australian, holds many Ashes records, including:
- Most Runs. He holds 5028 runs in 37 matches.
- Most Centuries. A century in cricket is a score of 100 or more in a single inning. The Don has scored 19 centuries and 12 half-centuries in the Ashes.
- Best Average. He also holds the best batting average of 89.78 in 37 matches.
Australia dominates the Ashes, having won the latest tournament in Blundstone Arena, Hobart, 4-0 after 12 days of intense play. Cameron Green, the young 22-year-old, smashed 74 runs in the fifth Test, totally obliterating England.
England’s demise was considered inevitable, with their batting performance at their worst. Australian Captain Pat Cummins led his team marvellously and delivered the death blow to Ollie Robinson to claim the 2021-22 Ashes trophy.
Cricket, Australia’s national summer sport, has been widely played for more than 200 years and has become a pride of the nation, even calling cricket players heroes. The women, joined in the action and at the moment holds the title for The Women’s Ashes with teen sensation Darcie Brown, leading the Aussies to claim a victory against formidable rival England. Even in the Women’s division, The Australians are the team to beat in the Women’s Ashes.
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