02 November, 2006
The Ashes Exhibition - sydney
The original Ashes Urn, one of sport¹s most celebrated icons, is on tour from London¹s Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC).
The Ashes Exhibition celebrates more than 124 years of sporting rivalry between Australia and England, showcasing rare cricket memorabilia, including blazers, bats, photographs and paintings from the MCC.
Venue: The Museum of Sydney, corner Bridge and Phillip Street, Sydney, NSW
Exhibition dates: Until November 8 2006
For further information: Go to
An hour into the innings England still seemed certain to win – the total was reduced to 34 with seven wickets still in hand and Grace still at the crease. However, the course of the match changed dramatically when Grace’s wicket fell, triggering one of the most famous collapses in cricketing history. Remarkably the Australian team won by seven runs, registering its first victory over England on English soil.
The defeat shocked English cricket fans. Reports of the match told of tense spectators gnawing through umbrella handles and dropping dead from heart attacks. The result also inspired the satirical side of the British sporting press – in the days after the match two mock obituaries were published lamenting the death of English crickeT The most well known of the two, printed in the London Sporting Times of 2 September 1882, read:
It was long thought that the Ashes urn was presented to the English captain, The Hon Ivo Bligh, at the conclusion of the third and deciding Test in Sydney. However, recent research suggests the urn was given to Bligh before the series had even begun.
After a social match involving some of the English team during a stay at Sir William Clarke’s Rupertswood estate in Sunbury, Victoria, Lady Clarke – no doubt aware of the banter in the press – presented Bligh with a small vase containing ashes.
Despite inconsistent reports about what was burned to create the ashes – a cricket bail, a stump, the cover of a ball, or even a lady’s veil – this modest gift to Bligh has become a cricketing icon.
Don Bradman (1908–2001), widely regarded as the greatest batsman in the history of cricket, had a Test average of 99.94, a Test aggregate of 6996 runs, and a total of 117 first-class centuries, including 37 double centuries.
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