On Wednesday August 1 2018 at Edgbaston an England team walks on the field to begin a Test match for the 1000th time.
Among the reflections, the listicles and the shallow on-line polls, people have been choosing their greatest and/or favourite Test matches of the previous 999 (actually 1004 if you count washouts and cancellations). Headingley 1981 and Edgbaston 2005 are both, quite rightly, very popular selections. Lack of television footage and eyewitness recollections from The Oval 1882 have prevented it from polling as high.
I’ve chosen a different Test as a personal favourite, an eventful match that occupies a seminal place in England’s Test cricket history. I give you 1970-71’s Seventh Test against Australia.
Before the Australian women’s cricket team played their touring England counterparts in Brisbane in December 1934, the following directive appeared in the Courier Mail:
No one in the press or elsewhere paid any attention to this instruction, and the first women’s Test match concluded at the Brisbane Exhibition Ground on New Year’s Eve 1934, the visiting English winning by nine wickets.
It’s taken 83 years for Australia and England to come together for their 49th women’s Test (plus one washed out), and their four-day meeting at North Sydney Oval beginning on Thursday 9 November 2017 was a special occasion as the first to be played as a day-night fixture. Continue reading “The grim trial of strength that went mainstream: women’s Test cricket”
England’s women’s cricket team headed to the Antipodes in January 2000 to play one-day internationals in Australia and New Zealand. By the time they were ready to head east across the Tasman, England had lost the ODI series to Australia 0-4 and Karen Smithies had resigned as captain.
Working for Cricinfo at the time I covered every ODI of the Australian leg of the tour, and I believe I have the only comprehensive documentation of these games. Continue reading “A bit of light reading about the 1999-2000 England womens tour”
January 1, Kirribilli House, Sydney. Two of these three men still had their job at the end of the year:
Blame John Howard for starting the annual New Year's Day lunch that led, in 2015, to this: pic.twitter.com/IeP3GCmAJm
— Rick Eyre on cricket (@rickeyrecricket) January 1, 2015
Statement from Kieran Powell about his absence from cricket reveals bewildering mismanagement by WICB officials – http://t.co/ZqS6x1Rq5O
— Rick Eyre on cricket (@rickeyrecricket) January 8, 2015
My full obituary for Richie Benaud is published at Medium.
What started as a midsummer diversion in the English cricket season of 2003 became a multi-million dollar enterprise in India in 2008, and now almost every Test playing nation has its own professional Twenty20 competition, squeezed into their domestic program.
The 2011-12 season saw the transformation of Australia’s state-based “Big Bash” competition into the franchise-based Big Bash League. Continue reading “The Big Bash, And Juggling Cricket’s Three Formats”
If we didn’t know before, we do now. Australia’s 5-0 drubbing of England in 2006-07 is the first such triumph since 1920-21. But which was the bigger achievement? Continue reading “Twenty21 revisited”
Essex v Australia, Chelmsford, 3-4 September 2005
Stumps Day OneEssex First innings Runs Balls 4s 6s WI Jefferson b MS Kasprowicz 64 73 10 1 AN Cook c JN Gillespie b MS Kasprowicz 214 238 33 1 RS Bopara b SW Tait 135 220 17 2 ML Pettini c ML Hayden b SW Tait 8 16 1 0 +JS Foster not out 38 61 0 0 JD Middlebrook not out 26 30 0 0 Extras (b 4, lb 5, nb 8, w 0) 17 Total for 4 wkt (105 overs) 502 Bowling Overs Maidens Runs Wickets Extras B Lee 13 0 69 0 - JN Gillespie 22 3 80 0 - SW Tait 15 1 72 2 - SCG MacGill 24 0 128 0 - MS Kasprowicz 19 2 85 2 - BJ Hodge 12 1 59 0
Something I thought I would never see, well not in this decade anyway, appears to be unfolding at New Road, Worcester, today.
It’s lunch on Day Three of the Second Women’s Test between England and Australia. The visitors made 131 in their first innings. England, after being 227 for 9 at the close of the second day, advanced to 289 all out. Australia faced sixteen overs before lunch. They are currently 13 for 3. Continue reading “A great English victory beckons”