Cricket has always been an exciting sport, and so is the history related to it, says Thomas N Salzano a cricket coach and a sports blogger. Countries like England and Australia have also been in records for their contribution as cricketers and “The Ashes” history is also related to these two countries.
The History of the Ashes
In 1877, the cricket team of Australia and England met in Melbourne for a test match, but the history of the legend of The Ashes, the symbolic trophy began in 1882.
The Ashes is a special series of matches between Australia and England every two years. The real story behind this special test series is that when England was beaten at home at the Oval for the first time by Australians in 1882. The print media took a dig into the matter as the newspapers said that “English cricket would be burnt down and the ashes sent to Australia.”
Responding to this defeat England’s captain, Ivo Bligh, promised to “regain those ashes.” It was during the same tour that a group of ladies in Victoria, including Florence Morphy, whom Ivo Bligh married within a year, present Bligh a small urn. This happened after England had won 2 of the three test matches on that tour.
It is said that the contents of the urn are reputed to the ashes of a wooden bail, and were humorously described as “The Ashes of an Australian Cricket.”
As a fact that the urn was a personal gift to Bligh, it is never considered as the official trophy of the Ashes series, it’s the replicas of the urn that are often held by the victorious teams as a symbol of their victory in the “Ashes Series.”
About the Ashes Series
- The Ashes series are held alternately in England and Australia roughly after every two years
- Both the teams play a series of 5 test matches, each lasting up to five days
- The winning team claims the most famous trophy in sport- “The Ashes urn.” It’s the smallest trophy in sports
- In case the series is drawn, then the trophy stays with the team that currently holds the trophy
- The winning team players get a replica to celebrate their victory.
The Women Ashes
The women cricket team of both countries plays a version of the Ashes too. The first women’s test series between Australia and England was played in 1934-35. The test series was officially called “The Women’s Ashes” after 1998 when an autographed bat was burned before the first Test series at Lord’s. The ashes of the burned bat were placed inside a cricket ball to make a trophy.
It was back in 2013 when a new Women’s Ashes trophy was introduced. But the women’s Ashes is not similar to the men’s test series as the women’s test series is a mixture of matches.
The tests, One Day Internationals, and Twenty20 International matches are a part of the women’s Ashes test series.
The scoring is simple, as 4 points are awarded for victory in a test match, 2 each for a draw, and 2 points for winning a One Day or Twenty20 match.
This special series between the two countries, Australia and England is a popular sports event for both countries. The history of the Ashes series makes it more special for the country people is what Thomas J Salzano feels. The emotions and pride attached to “The Ashes Trophy” have never let the enthusiasm down.
Currently 75 years old, the original urn is kept in the MCC museum at the Lord’s cricket ground in London.