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A little about history of Ashes Test Series

Ashes test series is no doubt the most popular cricket test match series in the world. No test match series drives this much excitement and I feel that an Ashes test match is second only to a world cup ODI match between India and Pakistan.

Today when the first test match on Ashes 2013 is being played already I decided to share some information and interesting facts about Ashes series with the readers of this blog.

First Ashes series was played way back in the year 1882 between Australia and England. Since then Ashes is being played between two countries and the excitement and interest of fans is ever growing.  Ashes series is held one in every two years and played alternately at England and Australia. If ever the series ends in a draw the team then the country already holding the trophy retains it till the next series.

History of Ashes:

In the year 1882, a visiting Australian team beat England by 7 runs. This was like a shock to the English cricket team fans and most of them felt that this was end of England team’s supremacy in cricket. Many newspapers published that this defeat is the death of English team cricket and Ashes being taken to Australia.

Here is the full quote about the same : "In Affectionate Remembrance of ENGLISH CRICKET, which died at the Oval on 29th AUGUST, 1882, Deeply lamented by a large circle of sorrowing friends and acquaintances R.I.P. N.B. - The body will be cremated and the ashes taken to Australia."

English media published lots of news, poems criticizing the English cricket team and praising the Austrians. When the England team was to tour Australia next, it was publicized as the "quest to retain the Ashes".  When England team arrived in Melbourne, the then captain of England team, Ivo Bligh was presented a terracotta urn by a group of women in Melbourne. It’s believed that the urn contained ashes of bails. Since this was a gift to the captain he retained it but the replica of that urn is being kept by the winning team since then. After the death of Ivo Bligh, his widow gifted the urn to Marylebone Cricket Club Museum at Lord's.

Ashes 2013 is the 67 Ashes series being played among the two teams and out of the 66 already played, Australian has won 31, England won 30 and 5 series were drawn.  Currently England is retaining the Ashes and let’s see which team will gain the Ashes in 2013. You can catch live action of the Ashes series online.

This was a little about the Ashes series, if you are a cricket fan then you must have also heard about the "Bodyline series". Bodyline series happened in the Ashes 1932-33 and I'll post about this series sometimes later.