Let The ASHES 2013 Begin
Recently after India won the 2013 Champions Trophy, the quote – “ASHES IS THE ONLY MAJOR TOURNAMENT THAT MS DHONI CAN’T DREAM OF WINNING” went viral on Internet. And now in two weeks time, two of the most oldest Cricket Teams in the World are set to revive their old Traditional rivalry. After being knocked out in the Grouped Stages of the Champions Trophy, the rejuvenated Australians are getting to take on the Pre-Tournament favourites England in their own backyard in 4 days time. We bring you the Ashes history in a nutshell and Preview the Upcoming Ashes Series that begins on 10 July 2013 in Trent Bridge, Nottingham.
Why Ashes is Played?
The Ashes series is named after a satirical obituary published in a British newspaper, The Sporting Times in 1882 Australia beat England on an English ground(The Oval) for the first time. The obituary stated that English cricket had died, and the body will be cremated and the Ashes taken to Australia. The English media dubbed the next English tour to Australia (1882–83) as the quest to regain The Ashes.
During that tour the urn was presented to the then England captain Ivo Bligh by a group of Melbourne women. The contents of the urn are reputed to be the ashes of an item of a bail. Although Bligh always considered it to be a personal gift, the Ashes Urn is believed to be the trophy of the Ashes series.
Replicas of the urn are often held by victorious teams as a symbol of their victory in an Ashes series. The actual Ashes urn normally remains in the Marylebone Cricket Club Museum at Lord’s since being presented to the MCC by Bligh’s widow upon his death. The real urn has never been presented or displayed as a trophy.
History of Ashes
July 10 will mark the beginning of 68th Ashes Battle. Over the years, both the teams fought hard for The Ashes 67 times both in home and away conditions every 2 years. Both the teams have fared quite well in the past and Australia edge England 31-30 in the Head-to-Head with the series drawn 5 times. As far as Ashes 2013 is concerned, this will be the ideal chance for Englishmen to be on par with the Aussies in the overall head-to-head. For the first time in history, two Ashes series are slated to take place in the same year due to the occurrence of 2015 World Cup in Australia.
The 67th ashes battle will begin on July 10, 2013 and will end on August 25, 2013. Within the next three months, both teams will face-off each other for yet another Ashes series that will be played Down Under. That will go down in history as Ashes 2014 since the final match will take place the next year. On current form, England look favourites to claim stakes in the historical battle twice in six months.
Legendary Australian Batsman Sir Donald Bradman has scored 5028 runs at an average of 90, the most by any players in Ashes. The Bowling Charts are led by Aussie spinner Shane Warne with a tally 195 of scalps at 23.26 runs per wicket. The last time when the Ashes took place in 2011, Andrew Strauss’ England beat Australia 3-1 in Australia.
The 2013 battle for the supremacy will be a perfect opportunity for England to stamp the authority over their traditional rivals Australia. England are confident and are looking to conquer the Aussies at home. Return of their star batsman Kevin Pietersen will boost their confidence level. They will be banking on their captain Alastair Cook and Bowling Spearhead Jimmy Anderson to deliver goods in the upcoming tournament. England have dropped their opener Nick Compton which makes Joe Root open the innings along with Cook. The form of Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Greame Swann and Stuart Broad will be crucial for England. Winning the matches as well as the series should not be a huge task for the English.
On the other hand, The Australians have seemed to have lost their Aura of Invincibility and were struggling to recover from their transition period. They are fighting for Glory amid the controversies that took toll from most of the team members. First, David Warner was suspended for punching England’s Joe Root during a brawl fight in the middle of ICC Champions Trophy. Then Australia were knocked out in the First Round of the Champions Trophy and their head coach Mickey Arthur was sacked paving way to former Aussie batsman Darren Lehmann to manage the team.
The Australians sans Ricky Ponting and Mike Hussey are banking on their skipper Micheal Clarke and All-Rounder Shane Watson to raise the bar and lead the team towards victory. They are expected to get ample support from Brad Haddin, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc and David Warner. This is considered as the weakest Australian side over the past two decades. Till now, the year 2013 hasn’t done any good for the Aussies. They were beaten Fair and Square by India and shamed in the CT 2013. Their fans will expect them to put on a spirited fight over the next month and a half.
England Squad for Ashes 2013(For the First Test alone): Alastair Cook(C), Joe Root, Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Ian Bell, Jonny Bairstow, Matt Prior, Greame Swann, Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Steven Finn, Graham Onions, Tim Bresnan.
Australia Squad for Ashes 2013:
Michael Clarke (C), Brad Haddin, David Warner, Ed Cowan, Phillip Hughes, Shane Watson, Usman Khawaja, Chris Rogers, Matthew Wade (wk), James Faulkner, Ryan Harris, Peter Siddle, James Pattinson, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Jackson Bird, Steve Smith.
Fixtures of Ashes 2013:
Now with the stage set for the much awaited battle, one thing the fans want is – Let the Ashes 2013 begin