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  #1  
Old August 25, 2011, 07:05 PM
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Default 2000 Tests, 2000 Posts

The Very First Test Innings: Bannerman’s Miracle.


by Charles Davis

The match now recognised as the inaugural Test match began at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Thursday 15th March 1877. Won by the Australians by 45 runs, it has been a match of great interest to cricket historians ever since. This article will focus on one aspect of the match, the incredible 165 by Charles Bannerman, which set some significant batting records that stand to this day. The aim has been to reconstruct an over-by-over structure for the innings. Unfortunately, no scorebook of the match is known to survive; the analysis that follows was possible thanks to the highly detailed style of reporting which can be found in Australian accounts of the time. In particular, the Melbourne newspapers The Daily Telegraph (which ceased publication in the 1880s), The Age, and The Argus provide abundant detail. The sources are not in harmony in every respect, and are not free from error; the analysis should be regarded as a distillation of the sources, aiming to produce the most coherent sequence of events possible.
The status of what was called the “Combination Cricket Match” was less certain then than it is now. It was not by any means a fully representative Test match in the modern sense, although the professional bowling attack arrayed against Bannerman was top notch. The match was clearly regarded, in the Australian reports, as a match of great importance. On the other hand, it was not mentioned at all in Wisden, and some Australian players declined to take part for rather trivial reasons. Fred Spofforth from New South Wales, for example, refused to play because his favourite wicketkeeper, Bill Murdoch, was not selected. Jack Blackham, the Victorian selected, was actually a superior keeper, and Spofforth’s attitude may be taken as evidence of the inter-colonial rivalries of the day.
The match had been arranged at short notice, and the scheduling seems to be ad hoc. Play commenced at 1:05pm on the first day. Comment was made that this was an exceptionally late start time. It may be that the Englishmen, who had been delayed, and indisposed, by an exceptionally difficult crossing from New Zealand, were not enthusiastic about a full day’s play. The Englishmen, nevertheless, were able to bowl over 140 balls per hour on the first day, well over 50% faster than the modern standard.
Betting on the match had the Englishmen at odds of 3-1 on at the outset. The odds offered changed sharply in the Australians’ favour as the innings progressed.
Alfred Shaw, bowling round-arm, bowled the first four-ball over from the “stand” or eastern end, bowling into the wind. The pitch in those days had a different alignment to the (roughly) north/south pitch seen today, which was set up in the early 1880s. There were no sight screens (another 1880s innovation). The lateness of the match in the season, only a week befor equinox, combined with the lack of sightscreens, must have made sighting the ball very difficult at the eastern end late in the day, and probably accounts for the early finishing time of 5:00 pm.
Allen Hill was the other bowler. Charles Bannerman, facing, opened the batting with Nat Thomson. There were perhaps 1,500 people present at the outset.
The initial field setting was: Shaw, bowler; John Selby, wicketkeeper; Thomas Emmett, point; James Southerton, slip; Allen Hill, “forward cover”; James Lillywhite jnr, mid-off; Andrew Greenwood, long-off; George Ulyett, long-on; Henry Charlwood, square leg; Thomas Armitage, mid-wicket; Henry Jupp, short leg. The contrast with modern new-ball field settings is evident (see figure ), with heavy protection against the drive. There was reason for this: Bannerman was known to heavily favour the drive, and he would score relatively few runs behind the wicket. The reports state that numerous hard drives by Bannerman were stopped at mid-on.

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Old August 25, 2011, 07:07 PM
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Australia v England, 2nd Test, Melbourne, 1876-77

England square the series

Martin Williamson

Two weeks and three up-country matches after the first Test, the sides returned to the MCG for a game played for the benefit of the tourists.
Australia were the pre-match favourites after their win in the earlier game and the return of Fred Spofforth which greatly boosted their bowling attack. Billy Murdoch, whose absence as wicketkeeper in the first match led to Spofforth's withdrawal, played as a batsman, although he took over the gloves on the last day of the game when Jack Blackham had sunstroke.
Australia batted but found Allen Hill, who took the first four wickets, too much for them, and from 96 for 4 they slid to 122 all out. England's start was hardly better, but from 4 for 2 they were indebted to their Yorkshire contingent for boosting them to 261. George Ulyett made 52, Greenwood and Hill 49, and Tom Emmett 48, with Yorkshire's batsmen making 86% of England's runs in the game.
Nat Thompson and Dave Gregory put on 88 for the first wicket when Australia batted again, but again the innings rather lost its way and they were dismissed for 259, leaving England a modest target of 120. James Southerton and James Lillywhite shared eight wickets.
It seemed as if history was about to repeat itself as England lost early wickets to find themselves at 9 for 3, but again Ulyett dug deep, and despite another mini collapse to leave them 76 for 5, by the time he was eventually dismissed for 63, the game was almost won.
As was often the case at the time, there were accusations that the outcome had been fixed, the suggestions coming from the large number of gamblers who had lost money on the first Test.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/story/59840.html

SCORECARD

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62397.html

Balls per over 4
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Old August 25, 2011, 07:17 PM
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3rd Test Notes:

  • FR Spofforth achieved the first Test match hat-trick when he dismissed Royle, Mackinnon and Emmett in the first innings.
  • Australia won by 10 wickets.
Scorecard
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62398.html

Almanack Report
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/153437.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 07:27 PM
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4th Test Notes:



(courtesy of ESPNcricinfo)

  • WG Grace, who scored England's first Test century, and his brothers EM and GF provided the first instance of three brothers playing the the same Test.
  • Played at The Oval for first time
  • First match where follow-on occurred
England v Australia 1880

....He must therefore rest content to put on record the following facts anent the match: - That in the history of the game no contest has created such world-wide interest; that the attendances on the first and second days were the largest ever seen at a cricket match; that 20,814 persons passed through the turnstiles on Monday, 19,863 on the Tuesday, and 3,751 on the Wednesday; that fine weather favoured the match from start to finish; that the wickets were faultless; that Mr Murdoch's magnificent innings of 153 not out was made without a chance, and contained one 5, eighteen 4s, three 3s, thirteen 2s and 41 singles; that Mr W.G.Grace's equally grand innings was made with only one hard chance, and comprised twleve 4s, ten 3s, fourteen 2s, and 46 singles; that superb batting was also shown by Mr Lucas, Lord Harris, Mr McDonnell, and Mr Steel; that the fielding and wicket-keeping on both sides was splendid; that a marvellous change in the aspect of the game was effected on the last day; that universal regret was felt at the unavoidable absence of Mr Spofforth; and that England won the match by 5 wickets.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/153438.html

Scorecard

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62399.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 07:32 PM
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5th Test Match Notes:

  • WE Midwinter made his debut for England having played for Australia in the first two Test matches.
  • Match drawn (by agreement), first of so of timeless matches..
Scorecard:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62400.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 07:37 PM
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6th Test Match

England in Australia Test Series[/url] - 2nd Test Australia v England

Australia won by 5 wickets

Scorecard:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62401.html

Almanack Report:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/153443.html

Awards:

Quote:
.....During the progress of the game Murdoch was presented with a splendid gold watch, and gold Maltese cross, in recognition of his great innings of 321 for New South Wales against Victoria. Barlow and Ulyett afterwards received each a Maltese cross set with diamonds for their fine batting against the combined team, and Blackham was presented with a service of plate for his fielding.
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Old August 25, 2011, 07:43 PM
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Biroti...hapaye gesi....it's impossible to post 2000 posts....

====

7th Test:

  • Bannerman-McDonnel puts up a good stand to ensure 6 wicket victory for Australia.
Scorecard:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62402.html

More on Bannerman:



Quote:
....... It was said that the Sydney public had become tired of his super-caution when Lord Sheffield's eleven were out in Australia in 1891-92, and were inclined to barrack him, but that everyone spoke of him as Good old Alec, when he took seven hours and a half to score 91 in the match that gave the Australians the rubber against the Englishmen. In that innings of 91 -- spread over three days -- he scored from only five of the 204 balls bowled to him by Attewell. Still, though such a slow run-getter, he made many big scores, and as a partner to great hitters like Percy McDonnell, Bonnor and JJ Lyons he was invaluable......
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/4089.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 08:30 PM
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8th Test:
Scorecard:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62403.html

Report
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/153445.html

Match notes
  • This was the last drawn Test in Australia until 1946-47. G Ulyett's 149 was the first Test hundred for England in Australia and it was the highest score for England on the first day of a Test in Australia until RW Barber scored 185 in 1965-66.

More on Ulyett



An anecdote:

Quote:
It was on that eventful Tuesday afternoon that Ulyett caught and bowled Bonnor in a way that no one who was present will ever forget. Bonnor's mission was to knock the fast bowler off, and he did his best. He drove a half-volley with all his force, but the ball - travelling faster than an express train - went into Ulyett's right hand instead of to the boundary. Bonnor wandered disconsolately back to the Pavilion, and the England players gathered round Ulyett, curious, perhaps, to know what manner of man he was, and anxious to congratulate him on his escape from imminent danger. One can remember, even now, the look of wonder on the faces of A. G. Steel and Alfred Lyttelton. Ulyett himself was very modest about the matter. Complimented on the catch, when the day's play was over, he said simply that if the ball had hit his fingers instead of going into his hand he should have played no more cricket that season.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/conte...yer/22146.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 08:36 PM
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9th Test:



Quote:
Then the game was slow for a time, and 12 successive maiden overs were bowled, both batsmen playing carefully and coolly
Full article:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/152999.html

  • In this 3-day match Australia beat England by 7 runs.
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Old August 25, 2011, 08:43 PM
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10th Test:

"A large number of catches were missed in this match, and the Englishmen were by far the greatest sinners in this respect...."

More..

Scorecard:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62405.html

Introducing Demon:




Quote:
Tall, spindly, and a player who consistently tested the wits of opposing batsmen, Fred "The Demon" Spofforth was Australia's first true fast bowler. His first-class career spanned the 23-year period between 1874 and 1897 and, throughout that time, his accuracy, his lionhearted endeavour and the phenomenal rapidity of his wicket taking made him a revered figure. Although he possessed a relatively unremarkable run-up and action (the most notable feature of which was a high leap just before he released the ball) and was never regarded as a tearaway fast bowler, Spofforth was an inspiration both for his peers and succeeding generations of pacemen. From the time of his debut for New South Wales, he was a larger than life character in the sport - the quality of his performances matched in kind by his ability to enhance the growing popularity of cricket in Australia.
Notwithstanding the relative superiority of bowlers over batsmen during his era, Spofforth's raw figures were outstanding; he claimed 94 Test wickets in 18 matches at an average of less than 20 runs apiece. He was also the first bowler to clinch a Test hat-trick; he claimed ten wickets in a match on four of those 18 occasions, and his analysis of 14/90 against England at The Oval in 1882 still stands as the second best performance in a match by an Australian bowler in the entire history of Test cricket. It remains salutary to note that, if it had not been for the growing business interests which ultimately took him to England (and ensured that he exited Test cricket in 1886 when he was at close to the peak of his powers), he may well have been able to enjoy even greater success.
Spofforth's stamina also set him apart from other players of his era. He reputedly spent considerable time at his brother-in-law's rural property before embarking on at least two of his five tours of England specifically in order to improve upon his fitness, and it was also common for him throughout his career to bowl considerably more overs than his teammates. He left another enduring legacy for other fast bowlers to follow in that he was one of the first Test cricketers to exhibit the trait of refusing to take a backward step in his approach to the game either on or off the field. He refused, for instance, to play in Australia's first ever Test team because New South Wales wicketkeeper Billy Murdoch was overlooked at the selection table, and it was only when Murdoch was chosen for the following match that he made his own debut at international level.
To celebrate his outstanding overall record in the sport, Spofforth was honoured with induction into the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame when that institution's original ten members were named in late 1996.
John Polack
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/7663.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 08:54 PM
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11th Test:

Scorecard:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62406.html

Match notes
  • W Bates achieved the first Test hat-trick by an England bowler when he dismissed McDonnell, Giffen and Bonnor in the first innings. He went on to become the first player to score a fifty and take ten or more wickets in the same Test match.
  • This was the first victory by an innings margin in a Test match.

Quote:
Then at 78 Bates accomplished the 'hat-trick', dismissing McDonnell, Giffen, and Bonnor with successive balls. Blackham was bowled at 85, and Garrett shared the same fate at 104. With an addition of ten runs a yorker got rid of Palmer, and without any increase in the total Spofforth was bowled and the innings terminated at 5.15 for 114, Murdoch carrying his bat for 19, the result of a two and a half hour stay at th wickets
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/153439.html

Bates:



Quote:
The tragic Willie Bates, whose luminous career was cut short by a freak injury in Australia in 1887-88. Bates was bowling his offspinners in the nets when a straight-drive hit him in the face, damaging his eyesight so badly that he never played first-class cricket again. After that, he became depressed and attempted suicide. Bates took 50 wickets in 15 Tests (all of which he played in Australia) at a startling average of 16.42. His finest hour came at Melbourne in 1882-83, when he took 7 for 28 (including the first Test hat-trick by an Englishman) and 7 for 74 as England hammered Australia by an innings. As a batsman he made ten first-class hundreds, and was good enough to open for England. He died in Yorkshire in 1900, aged only 45.
Wisden Cricinfo staff
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/9037.html

Quote:
At Melbourne, in January, 1883, playing for the Hon. Ivo Bligh"s team against the great Australian eleven of 1882, he performed the hat-trick, getting rid of Percy McDonnell, George Giffen, and Bonnor with successive balls. The way in which Bonnor"s wicket was obtained is amusingly described in the Badminton Book. All the Englishmen were desperately anxious that Bates should get his third wicket, and a council of war resulted in a very neat little plan being devised. It was said that Bonnor was sure to play slowly forward at the first ball he received, whatever its length, and on Bates promising to bowl a short-pitched ball on the leg-stump, Walter Read volunteered to stand short mid-on, and gradually creep in towards the batsman. Everything came off as had been anticipated, and Bonnor, having played the ball into Read"s hands, left the wicket lost in amazement that anyone should have ventured to get so near to his bat.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/155753.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 08:56 PM
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Now for the Icing on the Cake:
Quote:
Kapali joins an eclectic club

Andrew Miller
August 29, 2003
Text size: A | A
It has been several months since Alok Kapali last hit the headlines for his bowling. These days, it is his combative middle-order batting that occasionally catches the eye, but back in July 2002, when he made his Test debut as an 18-year-old, his legspin was perceived to be his strongest suit. Sure enough he picked up two (albeit expensive) wickets in his first outing against Sri Lanka.
But, in keeping with Bangladesh's struggles, Kapali's next scalp did not arrive for about a year - when Australia's Justin Langer played all round a straight one at Darwin last month. Now, however, Kapali has doubled his tally and halved his average (from a Mike Athertonesque 209.33 to an Ian Salisburyish 104.67), all in the space of three deliveries.
Kapali, who turns 20 on New Year's Day, is the 31st cricketer to take a Test hat-trick, and, hardly surprisingly, the first from Bangladesh. His efforts may yet contribute to an historic maiden Test victory, but judging by their late collapse on the third day at Peshawar, he will have to impress with the bat as well. Still, he completed a memorable day by reaching the close unbeaten on 4, to give Bangladesh a vital 118-run lead with six wickets remaining.
Bangladesh may not be too hot when it comes to team performances, but every once in a while they chalk up an unlikely individual achievement. Against India at Dhaka in November 2000, Aminul Islam became only the third batsman (after Australia's Charles Bannerman and Zimbabwe's Dave Houghton) to score a century in his country's inaugural Test. And a year later, in Colombo, Mohammad Ashraful became the youngest player to score a century on his Test debut, at 17 years and 63 days old.
In becoming his country's first hat-trick bowler, Kapali has been propelled into an eclectic nine-man club, occupied by three alltime greats, two extremely-goods, and a handful of extras. The club's inaugural member was Australia's demon fast bowler, Fred Spofforth, who ripped through England's batting at Melbourne in January 1879 with match figures of 13 for 110.
Four years later, England replied through Willie Bates, a maverick Yorkshire allrounder who played all 15 of his Tests in Australia. On his day he was irresistible, and at Melbourne in January 1883, his slow roundarm spin collected 14 wickets in the match, including 7 for 28 in 26.2 overs in the first innings.
England and Australia shared all 12 of the first hat-tricks in Test history, and it wasn't until March 1959 that any other nation got a look-in. Appropriately, it was one of the greats who broke the stranglehold. Wes Hall had already marked his arrival as a Test cricketer with 41 wickets on his maiden tour for West Indies, an arduous trek across India and Pakistan in 1958-59. And in the eighth and final Test of that trip, he took his tally to 46 with a hat-trick against Pakistan at Lahore.
South Africa were the next team to accomplish the feat, and against England at Lord's to boot. But it was a bitter-sweet occasion for the bowler, Geoff Griffin. An accident at school had left him with a permanently kinked elbow, and he was no-balled no fewer than 11 times for throwing. It was his second and last Test, and he retired a fortnight after his 21st birthday.
Only three men to date have achieved the feat on their Test debuts. The first was England's Maurice Allom, in January 1930. The second was New Zealand's offspinner Peter Petherick, who dismissed the Pakistan trio of Javed Miandad, Wasim Raja and Intikhab Alam at Lahore in October 1976. It merely delayed the inevitable, however, as Pakistan eventually won the match by six wickets. The third was Australia's Damien Fleming, at Rawalpindi in 1994-95, whose victims included Salim Malik for a modest 237.
Next to join the club were Pakistan. Wasim Akram had already picked up two one-day hat-tricks in quick succession in 1989-90. Now, nine years later, he repeated the feat in Test cricket as well. His first batch came against Sri Lanka, once again at Lahore, in the third match of the Asian Test Championship. One Test later, and in the final no less, he repeated the dose to send Sri Lanka crashing to an innings defeat.
In the recent World Cup, Chaminda Vaas took a spectacular hat-trick from his first three balls against Bangladesh. But he was merely following the example of his team-mate Nuwan Zoysa, whose opening over in the Test against Zimbabwe at Harare in 1999-2000 was equally astonishing. Trevor Gripper was not the most illustrious of first victims, but his next two, Murray Goodwin and Neil Johnson, are among the best to have played for Zimbabwe. At 0 for 3, it was a long way back for Zimbabwe, and unsurprisingly, they fell to a seven-wicket defeat.
The last, but most certainly not least of the countries to get off the mark was India - in the guise of Harbhajan Singh, in arguably the most astonishing victory in the history of Test cricket. India had been walloped by Australia in the opening Test of their 2000-01 home series, and when they were forced to follow on at Kolkata, the series looked dead in the water. But Harbhajan's first-innings hat-trick, including the prime wickets of Ricky Ponting and Adam Gilchrist, provided the first inkling that this was a miracle in the making. Sure enough, VVS Laxman and Rahul Dravid put together their thrilling 376-run partnership, and Harbhajan sealed the victory with match figures of 13 for 196.
As India proved then, miracles do happen. Alok Kapali will be praying for something similar tomorrow.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/conte...ry/125227.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 09:04 PM
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12th Test:

Quote:
After this match, the last of the rubber originally scheduled, some Australian ladies burned a bail, sealed the ashes in an urn and presented it to the victorious captain of the English team. The urn, together with its embroidered velvet bag, is housed in the Memorial Gallery at Lord's.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62407.html

She gave it to: Hon.Ivo Bligh...

More on him

At 6'3"....

Quote:
Ivo Bligh, who in 1900 became the 8th Earl of Darnley, was an extremely talented sportsman who won Blues at racquets and tennis as well as cricket. An excellent fielder and attacking batsman, his first-class career was short as he suffered from poor health from an early age.....
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/9127.html
Quote:
The most interesting episode of his short career was his visit to Australia in 1882-3 as captain of a team in an endeavour to regain for England the laurels lost in the historic Test at the Oval the previous summer. The Australians, under W. L. Murdoch's captaincy, had then, it will be remembered, won, after a thrilling finish, by seven runs--a result which led to the term The Ashes being coined. The said Ashes were supposed to have been taken to Australia, and hopes ran high that Mr. Bligh's team would recover them. As it happened, Mr. Bligh was successful in his quest, for, meeting Murdoch's men in three matches the Englishmen, after losing the first by nine wickets, won the second by an innings and 27 runs and the third by 69 runs. It is true that in a fourth game later in the tour, Australia--not solely Murdoch's men--were successful by four wickets: still, the rubber having been gained against the side which had defeated us at the Oval, honours were considered to have been won by the Englishmen. Mr. Bligh's interest in cricket remained as great as ever after he had dropped out of first-class matches, and he was President of the M.C.C. in 1900 and of the Kent County C.C. in 1892 and 1902. Apart from cricket, he had whilst at Eton distinguished himself greatly at rackets, having been champion in the singles in 1876 and one of the champions in the doubles in both that year and the next; while he represented Cambridge at tennis in the singles in 1879 and 1880, and in the doubles in 1878 and two following years. Later on he played a fair amount of golf, but his great love was always cricket--the game with which his family had been associated for nearly 150 years. Lord Darnley was one of the most genial and kind-hearted of men. Only a short time before he passed away he penned some interesting reminiscences of Mr. F. R. Spofforth for publication in Wisden.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/155633.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 10:00 PM
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13th Test:
  • Having completed the three-match rubber against WL Murdoch's 1882 touring team. England played a fourth match against a combined side. For this match the captains decided to experiment by using a separate pitch for each of the four inning
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62408.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 11:48 PM
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14th Test:

Quote:
Grace exhibited great skill and judgement in scoring his 31, and O'Brien made runs at a tijme they were badly wanted. Grace was one hour and a quarter scoring his 31, and Lucas was at the wickets two hours for his 24.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/153430.html

Scorecard:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62409.html
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Old August 25, 2011, 11:51 PM
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15th Test

  • Murdoch fielded as a substitute for the opposition and claimed the first sub catch in Test cricket
  • JM Blackham retired hurt at 94/6
  • Ulyett took 7 in second innings for England
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62410.html
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Old August 26, 2011, 12:00 AM
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The Ashes - 3rd Test
England v Australia
Match drawn
The Oval
11 Aug 1884

16th Test


The Ashes - 3rd Test
England v Australia
Match drawn
1884 season
Played at Kennington Oval, London
11,12,13 August 1884 (3-day match)

  • WL Murdoch scored the first double-century in Test cricket. His stand with Scott of 207 was a Test record for any wicket.
  • WW Read reached his hundred in 113 minutes with 36 scoring strokes.
  • For the first time in Test cricket all eleven players bowled during Australia's innings, Grace keeping wicket while Lyttelton took four wickets with lobs.
  • Declarations were not permitted until 1889.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62411.html

More on Murdoch:



Born on my birthdate....Murdoch was:

Quote:
... To be seen at his best, he needed sunshine and a lively pitch. Then he could be great indeed, as those who remember his famous 153 not out at The Oval in 1880 in the first Test match in this country, and his 211 on the same ground in 1884 will not need to be told.Few batsmen have been better worth looking at, his style leaving no loophole for criticism. He was essentially an off-side player, his cut and drive being equally fine. Nothing in his play was more skilful than the quickness of foot by which in getting forward at the ball he made up for a limited reach. It could not be urged against him that he was a slow scorer, but if the occasion demanded caution he had inexhaustible patience. In a word, he was in the domain of orthodox batting a complete master. His method served him well, his perfectly straight bat enabling him even at the end of his career to defy lack of condition and get hundreds. So recently as 1904 he scored 140 in the Gentlemen and Players' match at The Oval.
In his early days in Australia, Murdoch was a first-rate wicketkeeper and it was chiefly as a wicketkeeper that he secured his place in the Australian team of 1878. He kept wicket in the memorable match against MCC at Lord's -- the match that once for all established the fame of Australian cricket -- but he soon found that he could not hold his own with Blackham, and thenceforward batting became his exclusive study. ....
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/6669.html

Quote:
By the early 1890s throwing was disturbingly pervasive in English cricket and being assimilated by impressionable colonials. Erstwhile Australian skipper Billy Murdoch heaved an exasperated sigh in Wisden: "To my mind the remedy for throwing is very simple; the rule says `if the umpire be not satisfied of the absolute fairness of the delivery of any ball he shall call `no ball'.'
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wcm/cont...ry/138634.html

More

http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/155793.html
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Old August 26, 2011, 12:16 AM
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17th Test

England won 8 wickets
Australia v England Adelaide 12 Dec 1884


THE ASHES: 1st Test

Quote:
...The main features of the match were the splendid batting of McDonnell and Barnes, the fine hitting of Ulyett, and the wonderful defence and patience of Scotton...
Quote:
....When Giffen came in, Blackham did nearly all the scoring, and the excellent total of 224 for 4 wickets was reached. Then an extraordinary collapse took place, and the remaining batsmen were got rid of for an addition of only 19 runs. ...
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/153648.html

Scorecard:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62412.html

McDonnell made 124 and 83 and may have been 'MoM' in present day.
Let us look into him:

Also known as Greatheart right-hand batsman Percy Stanislaus McDonnell was


Quote:
Almost certainly the only Greek scholar to captain Australia. [He] was a brilliant attacking batsman whose outstanding footwork and hand-eye co-ordination helped him excel on wet wickets. His best innings probably came in the third Test against England at Sydney in 1881-82. McDonnell made 147, adding 199 with Charles Bannerman, who made 70. The rest of the batsmen mustered only 29 between them. He died in Brisbane in 1896 after a long illness, aged only 35.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/6557.html






Quote:
...McDonnell was educated at St Patrick's College, where he was a prodigy at cricket and a fine footballer. After an inauspicious début in intercolonial cricket in 1878, in which he got 'a pair' against New South Wales, he soon became one of the fastest scoring batsmen in Australian cricket. In 1878-85 he batted seventeen times for Victoria with an average of 30.31. For New South Wales from 1885 he batted fifteen times at 38.21. In 1886 at Melbourne he scored 236 of the New South Wales total of 363....
http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/mcdo...tanislaus-4082

100th Duck

http://www.andovercricketclub.co.uk/...-%20080809.pdf
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Old August 26, 2011, 12:37 AM
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18th Test:






England won 10 wickets
Australia v England Melbourne 1 Jan 1885

















  • Australia's team showed eleven changes as a result of the 1884 touring team (who had contested the 1st Test) demanding fifty per cent of the gate money for this match. Thus was ended the unique run of JM Blackham who played in each of the first 17 Test matches.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62413.html

Blackham who? Glad you asked:



Quote:
By virtue of his capacities as a wicketkeeper in the very early days of Australian first-class cricket, Jack Blackham is widely reputed to have been one of the finest cricketers that his nation has ever produced. In an era in which the flimsy texture of wicketkeeping gloves provided little protection from the consistent pounding of balls into a wearer's hands, Blackham displayed extraordinary skill and it is said that he rarely failed to seize an opportunity to effect a dismissal in his position behind the wicket. He was so competent that he was regarded as Australia's first choice wicketkeeper for a period of no less than 18 years, occupying the role from the time of his country's first ever Test - in 1877. Unlike many of his peers or successors, Blackham was just as happy to stand up to the stumps to pace bowlers as he was to spinners. He was also a stubborn batsman in the lower order, and played many valuable innings. Of these, the 74 that he made against England in Sydney in 1894-85 stands out statistically, for it was both his own highest score and allowed him to join with Syd Gregory in delivering Australia what still remains its all time record Test partnership for the ninth wicket. As a reflection of his considerable ability, Blackham was named by Wisden as one of its Cricketers of the Year in 1891. More recently, he was honoured by being selected as one of the inaugural members of the Australian Cricket Hall of Fame.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/australi...ayer/4153.html

More:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/155648.html
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/154833.html
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Old August 26, 2011, 05:31 PM
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19th Test

Australia won 6 runs
Australia v England Sydney 20 Feb 1885








Scorecard:
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62414.html

Quote:
It will be seen that Barnes did not bowl a single over during the match...
Quote:
Barnes proved himself to be the most destructive bowler in the team in the first-class matches of the tour, and it is therefore to be hoped that the following extract from an Australian paper does not give the true reason for the non-appearance of Barnes the bowler in this contest: - "It should be stated that owing to some unpleasantness between Shrewsbury and Barnes, the latter refused to to bowl when asked to do so. Everyone is aware that the first thing a cricketer has to do is to obey the captain, and therefore there is no excuse for Barnes. In the report on the second day's play adverse comment was passed on Shrewsbury for not putting Barnes on when Garrett and Evans made their stand. It appears that Shrewsbury did ask Barnes, and that the latter refused, as he did again in the second innings. It is to be regretted that a cricketer of Barnes' experience and skill should so far forget himself and his side as to let personal pique affect the result of a contest."
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/153650.html
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Old August 26, 2011, 05:39 PM
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20th Test:




Australia v England Sydney 14 Mar 1885

Australia won by 8 wickets
5-match series level 2-2
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62415.html

Quote:
At this point the prospects of a follow-on appeared very probable, but upon Jones joining Bonnor a magnificent stand was made, and the aspect of the game underwent a complete change. Bonnor started in very indifferent form, but afterwards hit with the utmost brilliancy. After a short period of slow play Bonnor hit Barnes to the pavillion for 4, and drove the next ball over the boundary for 5. From this time to the close of the day's play the English bowling was punished with the utmost severity. Flowers gave way to Peel, and soon afterwards Attewell relieved Barnes, a hit off the last named bowler by Bonnor saving the follow-on. Ulyett was tried again, but soon gave way to Flowers. At length Barnes went on again, and from his first ball Bonnor was easily caught at third man with the total at 288. Bonnor's magnificently-hit innings of 128 was the highest made against Shaw's team, and included four 5's, and fourteen 4's. Bonnor and Jones put on 154 for the 8th wicket. It was not to be expected that so long an innings should be played without chances being given, and Bonnor's fine contribution was not without blemishes. Though narrowly escaping being bowled several times, he gave no real chances in the field until he had made 81, when Peel misjudged a bad hit. With his score 98 he might have been caught by Barnes at slip, and later on was missed by Read at long-on. At the call of time the total stood at 308 for 8 wickets, Jones, not out 40, and Blackham, not out 11.
Full report
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/153656.html

Bonnor



Quote:
Among those cricketers who reached 6ft 6ins were Durston of Middlesex, who played for England in 1921, L. E. Nagel of Victoria, who bowled for Australia against England in 1932-33, and his twin brother V.G., G. J. Bonnor, the great Australian hitter, Alan Marshal of Queensland and Surrey, who was one of Wisden's Cricketers of the Year before the first world war, and Philip Hodgson, who played for Yorkshire a year or two ago. At least 100 other cricketers of 6ft 3ins or over have played in first-class cricket.
More on tall cricketers....
http://www.espncricinfo.com/crickete...ry/139393.html
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Old August 26, 2011, 05:47 PM
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21st Test:
England won inns & 98 runs
Australia v England Melbourne 21 Mar 1885

England won ASHES 3-2

Match notes
  • A Shrewsbury became the first Englad captain to score a Test hundred.
  • TW Garrett deputised for umpire Hodges when the latter refused to stand after tea on the third day because of England's complaints about his decisions. JC Allen stood for Phillips on the third and fourth days. McShane played in this Test after umpiring in the previous one.
  • Jarvis was the second Australian substitute fielder after Murdoch to hold a catch for England.
  • W Bates (1) retired hurt on 54* from 214/4 to 324/7
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62416.html

Arthur Shrewsbury



Quote:
For almost a decade starting in the late 1880s Arthur Shrewsbury was arguably the finest batsman in the world. WG Grace, his main rival for that accolade, was once asked who he'd most like to have in his side, and said simply: "Give me Arthur." With a game built around an impregnable defence based on his pads, Shrewsbury was a magnificent runmaker especially on bad or so-called sticky wickets, scoring many of his greatest hundreds on pitches his partners found impossible to master. The best-known of these knocks came against Australia at Lord's in 1886, when he scored a masterly 164 against the might of Fred Spofforth, on a pitch deemed "impossible" by his peers. Seven years later he repeated the feat, with a well-made 106 - again at Lord's against Australia - in equally trying conditions, on a sticky wicket against Charles "The Terror" Turner. Even in 1902, his final season, by which time he was 47, Shrewsbury managed to top the first-class averages (1250 runs at 50), as he had done half-a-dozen times in his heyday. Sadly, though, he shot himself the following year after a bout of depression. A quiet, humble man, his passing was mourned all over the cricket-playing world - but especially in Nottinghamshire, the county which he served grandly for nearly three decades.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/conte...yer/20179.html

Shrewsbury's sorrows


Quote:
In the winter of 1901-02, Arthur Shrewsbury found himself homeless....
Quote:
The verdict on Arthur Shrewsbury was that he took life too seriously. His business affairs were treated in the same way as his approach to cricket, every step being most carefully rehearsed and every foreseen possibility catered for...
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/conte...ry/141167.html
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Old August 26, 2011, 06:16 PM
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22nd Test:

England won 4 wickets
England v Australia Manchester 5 Jul 1886


Scorecard

Barlow took 7 wickets in the 2nd innings for England helping them win 1st test of the 1886 Ashes...

More on Barlow...


Quote:
Dick Barlow was a dour and resolute opening batsman who was the first to really use forward play defensively, and was so passionate about the game that he continued playing club cricket well into his sixties as well as being a capable umpire who stood in one Test in 1899. Hard to dismiss, Barlow is remembered for his association with fellow Lancashire opener Albert Hornby, who was his antithesis with the bat, and they were immortalised in one of the game's most famous poems by Francis Thompson:
"As the run-stealers flicker to and fro,
To and fro,
O my Hornby and my Barlow long ago"
He also developed into a very good slow-medium left-armer with immaculate length, clever variation, and a good eye for batsmen's weaknesses. He took a wicket with his first ball in first-class cricket and took four first-class hat-tricks. He carried his bat 11 times, including a two-hour innings of 5 not out (made out of 69) against Nottinghamshire in 1882.
Barlow toured Australia three times, playing in every match on each occasion, and he also played against Australia seven times at home. Although his highest Test score was only 62, Barlow played several valuable defensive innings in difficult circumstances. As a bowler he was more successful; his 7 for 44 at Manchester in 1886 was a match-winning performance. Playing for North of England against the Australian tourists in 1884 he took 10 wickets in the match, and then made a superb hundred (one of only four first-class centuries in his career) against Spofforth at his best. For the Players in the same year he captured a remarkable hat-trick of Gentlemen - WG, Shuter and Read falling to successive deliveries.
Close to the end of his life Barlow was quoted in the Manchester Guardian as saying: "I don't think any cricketer has enjoyed his cricketing career better than I have done, and if I had my time to come over again I should certainly be what I have been all my life - a professional cricketer."
Away from cricket, he kept goal to county level at football and was also a top sprinter.
http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/8992.html

More on
Richard ('Dick') Barlow

http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/155609.html
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Old August 26, 2011, 06:22 PM
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23rd Test:
England won inns & 106 runs
England v Australia Lord's 19 Jul 1886


Scorecard

ASHES 2nd Test: England won by an innings and 106 runs

Series England led the 3-match series 2-0

Shrewsbury scored 164 playing for 411 mins.

Quote:
...
Shrewsbury, who had gone in first wicket down with the score at 27, was the last man out, and too much praise cannot be afforded him for his most extraordinary performance. He was at the wickets for six hours and fifty minutes, and though he gave a couple of difficult chances, there was scarcely any fault to be found with his batting. It should be stated that the wicket on this morning was rapidly improving, but Shrewsbury had thoroughly mastered all the varying conditions of the ground. His figures were sixteen 4's, eight 3's, sixteen 2's, and 44 singles, and up to this time his 164 was the largest score, ever made against Australian bowling in England.
Full report from almanack

http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/150137.html
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Old August 26, 2011, 06:29 PM
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24th Test:

The Ashes - 3rd Test

England v Australia
England won by an innings and 217 runs
Played at Kennington Oval, London
12,13,14 August 1886 (3-day match)

  • WG Grace (170) recaptured the record England Test score which A Shrewsbury snr had claimed in the previous match, he batted for 270 minutes, hit 24 fours and made his 170 out of 216.
  • He helped take the series 3-0 as England beat by Australia by an innings and 217 runs.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/62419.html

Quote:
...Although Mr W. G. Grace made the highest innings he had ever scored against Australian bowling, it was pretty generally admitted that his cricket was more faulty than usual. He gave an easy chance to Scott at short slip when he had made 6, when his score was 23 he hit a ball very hard back to Giffen, which was a possible chance to that bowler's left hand; when he had scored 60 he might perhaps have been caught in the long field, had Bruce started earlier for the ball, and when his total was 93 McIlwraith had a difficult one-handed chance of catching him at slip. Moreover, just before getting out, when his total was 169 he hit a ball straight back to Garrett, who failed to hold it. Still, these blemishes notwithstanding, the innings was a very fine one. He made the enormous proportion of 170 out of 216 during his stay, which lasted altogether four hours and a half, and his figures were twenty-two fours, four threes, seventeen twos and thirty-six singles. In an hour and fifty-two minutes before luncheon Mr. Grace made 40 runs, and consequently in two hours and thirty-eight minutes afterwards he made 130. ...
Full almanack report
http://www.espncricinfo.com/wisdenal...ry/152998.html
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