Talk:The Ashes

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Former featured articleThe Ashes is a former featured article. Please see the links under Article milestones below for its original nomination page (for older articles, check the nomination archive) and why it was removed.
Main Page trophyThis article appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page as Today's featured article on July 21, 2005.
On this day... Article milestones
June 6, 2005Peer reviewReviewed
June 23, 2005Featured article candidatePromoted
December 4, 2007Featured article reviewDemoted
May 1, 2008Peer reviewReviewed
On this day... A fact from this article was featured on Wikipedia's Main Page in the "On this day..." column on August 29, 2008.
Current status: Former featured article



  1. Support and very topical this year, jguk 12:19, 15 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  2. Support Would be nice to get this up to featured fairly soon to have it on the Main Page on the first day of the series. Smoddy (Rabbit and pork) 15:46, 15 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  3. Support Tintin1107 18:20, 15 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
  4. Support Needs a picture, and the tour details need to be moved to another page. (It makes it too long). The Ashes will make an interesting read.  =Nichalp (talkcontribs)= 19:14, May 18, 2005 (UTC)


The English media fastened on to this notice and dubbed the English tour to Australia of 1882-83 as the quest to regain The Ashes of English Cricket. The underlying metaphor of this naming is problematic, suggesting that English cricket is a sentient being which was killed by Australia, cremated and then somehow went in search of its own remains. Is someone taking the piss here, or is this an actual issue?AH60.240.1.31 11:54, 23 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]


NB: This appeared on the page one of the mirror on Monday, September 3 2001:

"In affectionate rembrance of cock-licking, penalty-scoring, and downright bloody irritating German football, which died at the Olimpiastadion, Munich, on 1st September, 2001. Deeply unlamented by a large circle of English football fans, RIP.

NB: The body of Oliver Kahn's gloves will be cremated and the ashes taken to England."

I wasn't sure about the formatting of the results list so I left it as one long, left justified bullet list. Also, the data is cut and pasted from a BBC site I know data like this is in the public domain but did it need to be reformatted to avoid copyright violation? Gest 17:54, 9 Jul 2004 (UTC)

Hmmm, it's a pretty minimal formatting. I doubt it'll cause a problem. Although it could use prettying up a bit. I'll give it a go when I get time. dmmaus 22:40, 9 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Wow. I thought I might be going overboard with all those results but it's impressive what you've done with it. One thing though; I called it the Tournament history as a series refers to the matches from one year as opposed to the hundred odd. I sort of prefer series anyway though.Gest 02:00, 10 Jul 2004 (UTC)
Well I don't think I've ever heard anyone call it a tournament. I think using "series" to mean all of the series is fair enough, as it can be a plural. And hopefully some other people will fill in details of all the other ones! --dmmaus 03:12, 10 Jul 2004 (UTC)

The 1989 Ashes series was a notable series as well. People still vividly recall this series some considerable time after it was played.

It was front page news in Australia back in '89.

I've changed Melbourne 2002/03 from being a "comfortable" to a "fairly comfortable" five-wicket win, since from what I remember about listening to it on the radio, there always seemed to be a chance - albeit a slim one - that the Australians would fall victim to one of their notorious collapses when chasing small totals. I know what-ifs can be distracting, but if Gilchrist had fallen for nought, for example, and therefore left the Aussies 90/6, the result might have been much closer. Loganberry 22:58, 25 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Improving this article[edit]

Some thoughts on what this article should include (some of which is already there, some of which isn't):

  • Description of how the Ashes started
  • Plum Warner retakes the Ashes (and re-popularises the term)
  • A brief summary paragraph of each series - highlights being Bodyline and the 1981 series
  • How other sports have borrowed the term
  • Picci of the urn
  • Piccis of leading figures in Ashes history - some of Bligh, Warner, Jardine, Bradman, Larwood, Botham, Lillee, Alderman, Warne
  • The series results - but summarised in a table

jguk 15:09, 21 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I think the table of results takes up an extraordinary amount of the article, and makes it look quite cluttered. How about creating List of Ashes series to take this away? Smoddy (Rabbit and pork) 09:09, 22 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Good idea, and that list also means we can link from the list to individual series when/if we start to write articles about those. Maybe sectioning the write-up paragraphs into "eras" (i.e. Aussie dominance from 87 till today, Bradman's era of the 30s and 40s) with Bodyline and '81 standing alone? Sam Vimes 12:38, 22 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Suggestion for what the list might look like:
  • 1882-83 - Australia 1-2 England (3 Tests)
  • 1884 - England 1-0 Australia (3 Tests)
  • 1884-85 - Australia 2-3 England (5 Tests)
etc. Sam Vimes 12:58, 22 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I've modified the headings to make it short and sweet. I feel that the table should be expanded horizontally to have four columns or six columns.  =Nichalp (Talk)= 14:45, May 22, 2005 (UTC)

This sentence doesn't sound correct - "Injuries to Botham and a less professional attitude hampered the English game after the classic 1981 series, and even though they took two series after 1981, the series were all close and could have gone the other way." The 1985 series could have gone only one way. 1986/7 too, while the early impression was that England 'can't bat, can't bowl, can't field', Australia never had a chance in the Tests. Tintin 08:43, 24 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Okay, rewritten now. If you still don't feel it describes it accurately, edit it again. :) Sam Vimes 08:50, 24 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]


How about these headings

==The obituary== (can be renamed)
==Notable series == 
 ===First quest ===
 ===The invincibles===
 ===Botham's Ashes ===
 === 2003 in Australia === (should be renamed)
==The trophy==
==The Ashes today== (a mention of how the series is viewed today by England, Australia, other test nations and the world media)
==See also==
==External links==

 =Nichalp (Talk)= 14:56, May 22, 2005 (UTC)

I think we should have a section on Plum Warner's tour of 1903/4. It was the first under the auspices of the MCC, and it repopularised the Ashes myth thanks to his book How We Recovered The Ashes. We should also have a section on how the name is also used in other sports, and also describe in a very high overview what happened in other series. Kind regards, jguk 17:07, 22 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Go ahead, no probs here.  =Nichalp (Talk)= 19:06, May 22, 2005 (UTC)
I've renamed the section "2003 in Australia" to "Steve Waugh's last Ashes" - think that's the most memorable thing that happened during the series (although it was also Alec Stewart's and Andy Caddick's last). As for used in other sports, isn't it only rugby league who use the term Ashes? Sam Vimes 18:17, 22 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I thought it was more sports than that - doesn't netball have Ashes? I'll have to do some (entirely unoriginal, of course) research, jguk 18:24, 22 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Ah yes... research on netball... n-e-t-b-a-l-l :-) Albatross2147 12:15, 21 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
While being good reading (and perhaps worthy of another article), I think jguk's series overview is going into a bit too much detail. Consider that at the moment about 30 lines (on my comp anyway - out of about 120) is on the first 20 years of the Ashes - so the article would eventually have something like 270 lines, which I think is a bit too long (though I'm not really sure how long featured articles usually are). IMO we should go from "very high overview" to "satellite-overview" (for example: "England dominated the 1880s, winning the first eight series and only giving up four Tests"), so that we can condense the article a bit. Sam Vimes 14:05, 23 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I admit I did feel it was getting a bit long as I wrote it. I just read through the History of Test cricket (1884 to 1889) and History of Test cricket (1890 to 1900) articles and added stuff from there. Please feel free to edit it down to size, jguk 18:20, 23 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]


I've removed this (mostly as I don't like it, and it seems juvenile for what is about to become a featured article):

In the fictional universe of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, the Ashes are actually the remains of the Wooden Pillar, a piece of the original "Wikkit Key" that was created as part of the punishment of the xenophobic planet Krikkit.

Kind regards, jguk 18:24, 22 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Bah, Douglas Adams was never juvenile. ;) I agree that it has little to do with the Ashes as a cricket series, though. Sam Vimes 18:46, 22 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Is there any room for a section or separate page on the Ashes in fiction? Doctor Who briefly landed on the pitch during an (obviously fictional) Ashes test at the Oval in 1966 as I recall. Episode script here (scene 6).--The Brain of Morbius 00:18, 24 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
How about "The Ashes outside cricket", which could encompass Doctor Who, HHGTG, rugby, and get it all out of the way of the cricket stuff. Smoddy (Rabbit and pork) 09:00, 24 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I would never have even bothered reading this article if I hadn't read about "the Ashes" in the Hitchhiker's Guide!

Dates in Table of Contents[edit]

I agree with Nichalp that once we get the whole summary up, in chronological order, dates are a bit pointless - as the article will mention them anyway. For the moment we can keep them, though, to show that there is still fifty years of history to be written. Sam Vimes 20:01, 23 May 2005 (UTC) sReply[reply]

They are only pointless if we mention the dates in the text. At present we don't - though I'd be happy removing the dates from the headers if the text was amended to make the years clear. The article's certainly improving loads! But still a way to go to make it a FA! Kind regards, jguk 20:34, 23 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

World Series Cricket[edit]

Surely the England wins of the late 70s have more to do with the Australian bans on World Series Cricketers than Boycott (who miraculously decided he did want to play again when Lillee and Thompson were out of the way)? jguk 21:13, 23 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

PS You can tell I'm not a Yorkshireman:) jguk 21:16, 23 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Quite possibly. I wasn't even born then! Edit it if you like (though I think the article currently says that England won the 1970-71 series because of Boycott - a series where he scored 657 runs @ 93.85, not the late 70s ones). There should be something expanded on the WSC era as well, but I don't think I'm best equipped to write it. Btw, interestingly, this seems to indicate that the 1979/80 series wasn't for the Ashes - could someone check that out and confirm it with a better source? Sam Vimes 21:23, 23 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
PS Our old friend the table [1] seems to agree that 79-80 was not an Ashes series :) Sam Vimes 21:28, 23 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Wisden confirms that the 1979/80 series was not for the Ashes - presumably as it was only a 3-Test series, jguk 21:38, 23 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Cheers, removed it from the list then. Sam Vimes 21:41, 23 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Where next?[edit]

Just trying to think where the article should go next? What else needs to be covered? What bits should be expanded? Any thoughts? jguk 12:35, 25 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

From up the article, there were suggestions to make sections/articles on "The Ashes outside cricket" by Snoddy, and "The Ashes today" by Nichalp. I particularly like the last bit - writing about how it's viewed by the English and Aussies (diehard cricket fans or more casual sports fans) and also the other cricketing countries. Sam Vimes 12:46, 25 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Well, I know how it's viewed by the English - and I can pretty much guess about the Aussies - but as for the Indians, West Indians, South Africans and Norwegians, someone else will have to help there:) jguk 18:23, 25 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Brett Lee implied in May 2004 [2] that he felt the India-Australia series was of greater significance than the Ashes, at least in terms of being an "unofficial world championship". I'm not sure how many of his compatriots would agree, though. Loganberry 22:30, 25 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Presumably as India was the last team to beat them in a series! jguk 05:43, 26 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Should we give FAC a bash now? It'll either get through or we'll highlight more areas for improvement if we do. Kind regards, jguk 20:19, 26 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hold on. I want to add some matter on the section I suggested. Jguk, is it possible that a scanned pic of the ashes trophy be obtained? It would seem odd that the article does not have a pic of its trophy.  =Nichalp (Talk)= 10:23, May 28, 2005 (UTC)

If you can find a picci that we can use, please add one. I'm not sure about copyright myself - and it's impossible to take a good photo of it in the MCC Museum because of the glass case it is kept in, jguk 15:31, 28 May 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

If you could take out a photo, then the best way is to take it out from an angle so that the flash reflects off the glass at another plane. The camers, glass and the trophy shouldn't be in a straight line in other words.  =Nichalp (Talk)= 11:55, May 29, 2005 (UTC)

Foreign relations[edit]

I believe that the rivalry started because of underlying political relations. I find it hard to believe that the governments of the two countries allowed the manifestation of the situation. I do believe that relations between the two nations were cooler than normal. Just as the India-Pakistan rivalry wouldn't have been had such ramifications as it does today, had the two nations not gone to war in the past. We need to cover the political relations at the start.  =Nichalp (Talk)= 11:53, May 29, 2005 (UTC)

Foreign relations[edit]

It is doubtful if the ashes commenced because of difficulties in the Anglo-Australian relationship. However, the Ashes have on occassions had the potential to worsen the relationship.

Two examples. 1. The body line series when the Australian board of control considered asking the English to leave and diplomatic messages were allegedly sent to defuse the situation.

2. Prior to the Ashes during an English tour in 1879(?), in an England vs NSW match, the umpire (Edmund Barton, who coincidentally was to become the first prime minister) turned down an English appeal. A section of the crowd heard an English fieldsman say " what do you expect from a group of convicts" (a very touchy subject in C19 Australia). A riot ensued and it was only due to the efforts of Barton that a diplomatic situation did not develop.--Porturology 00:40, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Note that there are very good articles about both of these at Bodyline and Sydney Riot of 1879. --Ngb 08:47, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Porturology is slightly wrong here. The riot started after George Coulthard, Barton's fellow umpire, gave Australian batsman Billy Murdoch out "run out". It was a close (but correct) decision, jguk 19:01, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Lifted from my talk page:

I don't think there was any hostility between Australians and British in the 1870s. The majority of Australians were British by birth and most of the rest regarded themselves as British by blood and by loyalties. Most Anglo-Australians were Empire loyalists, the only significant exception to this was the Irish minority. I don't think your thesis will hold water in this instance. In any case I've never seen any suggestion that sporting relations between Britain and the Australian colonies were anything other than friendly. Adam 12:36, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Opinion of Adam. I guess that relations were warm.  =Nichalp (Talk)= 18:19, Jun 1, 2005 (UTC)

The main hostility in the 1870s was between Victoria and New South Wales. The riot in Sydney did damage England/Australian cricket relations - but these were repaired by the end of the next Aussie tour to Britain, jguk 19:01, 1 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Peer review[edit]

I've put this article in Peer review so that we can get some more eyeballs on this page in its goal to become a featured article.  =Nichalp (Talk)= 11:52, Jun 2, 2005 (UTC)

Botham's picture[edit]

unrelated: botham's pic doesn't show. --Peripatetic 23:38, 2 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Are you using Zonealarm to block ads?  =Nichalp (Talk)= 05:02, Jun 3, 2005 (UTC)

2005 series[edit]

Considering that the imminent series was one of the reasons that the article was put forward as hopefully moving towards featured article status, it's suprising there's nothing here yet about Australia in England in 2005, other than one sentence at the end of the Steve Waugh section. Admittedly it hasn't started yet but surely there's a bit to say! - Ian 14:10, 4 Jun 2005 (UTC) Please ignore. I re-read and found the Ashes Today section - but maybe it could be a bit expanded. Ian 14:35, 4 Jun 2005 (UTC)


Shouldn't we put all the six venues in England ? Tintin 11:01, 14 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Ashes in Fiction[edit]

The Ashes are a key plot element in Life, the Universe and Everything Morwen - Talk 14:54, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)

  • That was originally mentioned, but it was deleted, as we didn't think it really relevant. Do you think you can find a good reason to keep it in? Perhaps the Rugby league section could be retitled "The Ashes outside cricket", then this could be mentioned along with the rugby. What do people think? smoddy 14:58, 17 Jun 2005 (UTC)
  • It is quite sufficient to have the existing link to the Rugby League page. No need for any other "Ashes" than the Cricket Ashes on this entry. Sports Fan 14:02, 12 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Portal message[edit]

Do our external sites pull through our Portal: namespace? Should this actually be on the main article? - Ta bu shi da yu 06:00, 21 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It should probably be in the external links section (if at all) - that's where most other articles place it. →Raul654 06:02, July 21, 2005 (UTC)

The cricket portal is the only portal we have in the main namespace (as it is designed entirely with readers - and not editors - in mind). It's not an external link, jguk 06:35, 21 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Two footnoting systems?[edit]

Good grief... I didn't even know these existed! Could we work on using one footnoting system? My preference is {{ref}} and {{note}}. - Ta bu shi da yu 06:14, 21 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Have gone ahead and fixed it. With no help from Mozilla Firefox, which is unable to even do a simple copy and paste. - Ta bu shi da yu 06:25, 21 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Have tidied up with later material and also reset the book references Chris 23:14, 14 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Summary of results and statistics - contradiction[edit]

The text: "To date, a total of 62 Ashes series have been played with Australia winning 30 and England 27 of them. Five of the sixty-two rubbers have been drawn", in the section "Summary of results and statistics", does not match the chart "Ashesserieschart.png", which states that Australia have won 39 times and England 27, with five draws. I presume the text is correct, since 30 + 27 + 5 = 62. 1403 21-7-05 UTC

A quick count at List of Ashes series seems to confirm that, so I'll remove the graph for now - until someone makes a better one Sam Vimes 16:40, 21 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Who reprimanded Peate?[edit]

In the report of the original "Ashes" match it is stated: "When Peate returned to the Pavilion he was reprimanded by the captain WG Grace for not allowing his partner at the wicket Charles Studd to get the runs." But Hornby, not Grace, was captain. So, who reprimanded Peate? MulgaBill 10:14, 25 July 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Grace (in Cricket) and Lord Harris (in A Few Short Runs) both provide eye-witness accounts of Peate's famous statement. Harris, however, is by far the more critical of Peate, so it may be assumed that he did the reprimanding. Cheers, Robertson-Glasgow 23:01, 10 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Rugby Ashes[edit]

There is a rather silly edit war underway over the Rugby Ashes. This Ashes entry is about the cricket Ashes and it (rightly) contains a link to the Rugby League Ashes. Can we please leave it at that and not try and distort the cricket Ashes site with any more stuff about the Rugby League Ashes? Sports Fan 13:10, 12 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I think we should keep the paragraph. The term "Ashes" is used in various other sporting contexts, other than the original one (cricket) and the main other other (rugby) (The popularity and reputation of the cricket series has led to many other events taking the name for England against Australia contests.). It is only one paragraph, of four sentences, in a longish article; only two of those sentences are about rugby. -- ALoan (Talk) 13:33, 12 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Agree with ALoan. The paragraph in question briefly explains the relationship with Rugby Ashes. The separate article Rugby League Ashes describes that series. -- —Moondyne 13:53, 12 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Agree with previous speakers - especially this: The popularity and reputation of the cricket series has led to many other events taking the name for England against Australia contests.. This should be explained further in the main article IMO - just like it was before Paddy Briggs got involved. Sam Vimes 14:12, 12 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oh dear, what a storm in a tea cup! "The Ashes" is, as the article makes clear, a cricket competiton. This article is (rightly) under the auspices of the Cricket Portal. At the beginning of the article there is a mention of the "other" Ashes which is a Rugby League competition. There is also a link to a page which deals with the Rugby competition. That is sufficient. PaddyBriggs 14:28, 12 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The rugby competition took its name from the cricket Ashes - which, I would think, is relevant to the history of the cricket Ashes? Sam Vimes 14:32, 12 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Indeed: in addition to rugby, there are various other sports that use the term "the Ashes" for England/UK v. Australia matches, all derived from the cricket Ashes. An example. It makes sense to explain that here. -- ALoan (Talk) 14:43, 12 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

This section describes some of the ways the cricket Ashes have influenced non-cricketing areas. It should stay in this article, jguk 20:29, 17 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Where the trophy stays[edit]

I've added a note about the Ashes trophy staying at Lord's to the start of he article. I realise that this is covered in much more detail later on, but I don't think this bit of redundant information detracts from the article; someone who doesn't know anything about the Ashes might just skim the beginning and go away with the impression that the trophy is shipped between England and Australia every series, to be presented. Tonywalton

Is it a "Trophy"?

My view is that the Ashes urn is not a Trophy. A trophy is presented to the winning side at the end of a tournament/match. This does not (these days) happen to the Ashes urn (although I think that it once did). The trophy is the Waterford Crystal replica. What do others think?--PaddyBriggs 10:41, 30 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

We've had a back-and-forth about this before. My take, for what it's worth, is that it was originally presented as a trophy (but arguably for that individual series). --Ngb ?!? 10:43, 30 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I agree. I have a photo of David Gower holding up the original Urn which he is certainly displaying as a trophy. Must have been 1985 I think. It will be ineteresting to see whether the ECB/MCC do let Michael Vaughan do the same at the Oval if it goes England's way next month!PaddyBriggs 11:11, 30 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

David Gower held up a replica not the original. It was the first time that a replica was presented to the winning captain and has been done virtually ever since. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:16, 14 January 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I've seen a photo of Steve Waugh kissing an immitation urn they had manufacturered, this was despite the trophy at that time clearly being the glass vase. The original presentation was to the captain who happily treated it as his personal property until it was entrusted to the MCC after his death. How, therefore, can this in any way be considered the trophy? It clearly can't. Dh219 11:06, 9 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Ashes from England?[edit]

The history of the ashes is incorrect. See for the actual story of how the ashes came to be fought, and how the urn came into existance.

-- 09:34, 30 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Any chance of more specific criticism? From a look at that site, the stories seem fairly identical Sam Vimes 12:41, 30 August 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The ashes are the ashes of english cricket, not a bail. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:11, 7 January 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Metaphorically they are the ashes of English cricket, but their literal manifestation came from the burning of a bail (or possibly a veil). JH (talk page) 09:26, 7 January 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]


I understand the high emotions and good feeling right now (for the English anyway), but to me this article seems to have too much emphasis on the 2005 Ashes, especially when calling it "one of the most exciting series of all time", which cannot be proven as of yet and is opinion. I hope this article is corrected in due time. (Jamandell (d69) 21:23, 12 September 2005 (UTC))Reply[reply]

Please, edit away. In response to your comments, though, Richie Benaud and numerous other writers have labelled this as the most exciting series of all time. Now this may be hyperbole, so sourcing it would be very good indeed. Direct quotes even better! Myself, I have to do some Greek prep, so excuse me. [[smoddy]] 21:30, 12 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Indeed - I have been trying to keep it as NPOV as possible. The 2005 series is mentioned:
  • entirely factually, in the first paragraph of the lead
  • as a "great series" in the third paragraph (while "one of the most exciting series of all time" seems a little hyperbolic, the results speak for themselves - the second closest Test of all time; the first Australian follow-on for years, with a last-wicket partnership denying victory; England losing 7 wickets chasing 124 runs; and Warne and McGrath's wickets this morning, until Pietersen came in - at least four of the matches are gems)
  • in passing, in the section on Australian dominance, again entirely factually
  • in the new section on the 2005 series - this pretty much copies material that was previsouly in the lead or the "Ashes today" section, and is pretty straight
  • in the "Ashes Today" section, which is really about the wider impact of the 2005 series today and going forwards
Here are a few references for Benaud's opinion ([3] [4] [5]) and I'm sure more from other commentators are available. I did add this paragraph:
The cricket in the 2005 Ashes series was not of the highest quality, with Glenn McGrath missing from two matches, many dropped catches on both sides, and slips behind the stumps by Geraint Jones, but it provided enthralling viewing. Respected commentator Richie Benaud has said that the 2005 Ashes series is the greatest series on which he has commentated, just ahead of Botham's Ashes in 1981.
but it was deleted by User:Johnporter24 - perhaps it should go back in? -- ALoan (Talk) 00:45, 13 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It is back in and I have quoted the source from the BBC website correspondent with footnote Chris 23:17, 14 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Internal contradiction[edit]

In the final section of "The matches", the cricket of the 2005 series is said to be "not of the highest quality" whereas the lower section "The Ashes today" says the cricket was of "overall high quality". Technically these statements are not totally contradictory but they seem a bit strange when considered together. My own opinion, for what it's worth, is that the standard of cricket was patchy: sometimes brilliant, sometimes awful (but always enthralling). I hope the authors of both these sections consider whether their sweeping statements are helpful. --DominicSayers 14:27, 13 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The urn[edit]

Is it terracotta, as described twice, or wooden, as described in "First Ashes quest"? I hesitate to edit one way or the other because I don't know; were there even two urns? phil_n 22:19, 14 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's certainly not wooden. Both its appearance and the fact it suffered cracking would suggest otherwise. The Independent article from three days ago repeats it's Terracotta, but I can't find a primary source (eg the Lords website). Dh219 15:37, 16 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

So, is it "The Ashes", or "the Ashes"?[edit]

Dominant (though not completely consistent) in the article seems to be lowercase-in-running-text "the", which I think is also the more common usage in general. Can I suggest that be used throughout (except in direct quotes or to note the variation) that way (or the other way, if that'd be preferable)? Also, if "the Ashes" is indeed the customary usage, it'd imply this page be moved to "Ashes (cricket)" in line with the naming conventions. Or alternatively, and perhaps better, to "Ashes", with the disambig moving along in turn. Alai 22:54, 18 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's "the Ashes", but the definited article is almost always there (the only exception I can think of is in the chant "Ashes coming home":) It makes sense to keep it at the Ashes, jguk 17:50, 19 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The naming convention test, however, isn't "'the' is almost always there", it's "'the' is capitalised in running text". Now, unless you want to argue it's a "work", or something along those lines... Alai 18:17, 19 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The naming conventions aren't rock-ribbed laws. Where it is sensible to bend them, we bend them. This is one example of many - most people will search for the Ashes under the Ashes or Ashes, there's no real benefit having the article at Ashes (cricket), jguk 19:09, 19 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The naming conventions are nonetheless policies; if it gets listed it as a requested move, you're free to vote against on essentially preference grounds, but what I was really hoping for was some policy rationale against not moving it (or a consensus for doing so). It's pretty immaterial what search terms people use, redirects and disambigs will ensure they find it anyway; and note that I indicated my tentative preference was for Ashes (and it's not at all clear that "the ashes" is what people are likely to type over "ashes"). I think that would probably be justified by the cricketting senses already being the top two, on the current disambig at that location, and the third being a second-order reference to the same. Anyone else care to chime in? Alai 19:50, 19 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

All the best rules have exceptions, otherwise they wouldn't be able to deal with the exceptions. Jooler 20:11, 19 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The policy supporting keeping this at "The Ashes" is the overriding one of commonsense. The article looks good (it is a featured article) and has a sensible name. What more could we want? jguk 20:17, 19 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Perhaps someone should add that to the policy regarding indefinite/definite article. "White House" means something without the definite article. "Ashes" on its own is nothing "The Ashes" is something. "Blitz" is nothing, "The Blitz" is something, etc.

(Above comment by User:Jooler, also)

That's the gist of what I was getting at. Well, I don't think we should add "jguk's commonsense", etc, to WP policy documents, but rather: is there an identifable additional class of such titles where the "the" should be retained? Personally I think it'd be fine at Ashes, but I'd also be interested in seeing some argument that it remain at The Ashes that wasn't completely ad hoc, and ideally, one from which one could usefully generalise. Alai 04:40, 20 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I agree on the point about the search term. When I first accessed the page I used "the Ashes" as the search term so I vote for leaving it where it is. Chris 07:42, 21 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Again, the "search term" argument is neither here nor there, since "The Ashes" would still be a redirect. Anyhoo, I've made a suggestion to "conventionalise" this practice, on the basis that the "the" makes the reference more specific and descriptive in some cases (including this one). If you agree with this line of thinking (or with some other rationale for changing the naming conventions) you might want to make a comment there. Alai 00:33, 23 September 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I changed the first image caption from "...symbolising 'the ashes of English cricket'" to "symbolising the death of English cricket" as I have never heard or seen it referred to as the former. Also tidied up a few clumsy stylistic and grammar issues.

Does anyone not feel a tinge of embarrassment when reading that godawful poem? --Dazzla 05:57, 27 January 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It should be "The Ashes" but it does not really matter. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 11:46, 13 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

English dominance ends[edit]

Why is this section empty? =Nichalp «Talk»= 15:25, 29 December 2005 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Because it never ended... 16:56, 6 March 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"The Ashes come home"[edit]

I feel that the section title "The Ashes come home" is rather biased (and I'm English!). Do other people agree? Can we think of a better title for the 2005 series? Stephen Turner (Talk) 07:59, 24 February 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

No argument here - just about anything would be better. How about a simple =2005 series=? -- —Moondyne 09:21, 24 February 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I wondered about that, but all the other series have nicknames. Maybe this one doesn't have a natural nickname though. (Please, no "Flintoff's Ashes"!). Stephen Turner (Talk) 09:48, 24 February 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I've changed it to "The 2005 series" for now. If we come up with a better name, we can change it again. Stephen Turner (Talk) 09:51, 24 February 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Problems with the article[edit]

1. Steve Waugh's last Ashes - the entire section reads like a tribute to steve waugh. Is it really necessary to mention his 'perfect day'(note that this is also unsourced)? This section has 2 paragraphs, the second one reading like a lame Hollywood script. "The series began with what many regard in hindsight as one of the worst captaincy decisions of all time" - Who regards so? This is a weasel statement, it needs sources.

2. Australian Dominance - "England were the better team of the early 1980s, although it was close: Australia won the 1982-83 series, but England then took two victories in 1985 and 1986-87". Firstly, thats incredibly POV (better team), and secondly, the sentence doesn't make any sense. So england were better in the early 80s, but it was "close", then England went on win in 85 and 87, which, begging your pardon, IS NOT EARLY 1980s. Please reframe.

3. Botham's Ashes - The entire bit about the match-fixing is TOO long, drawn-out and pointless.

Overall, I must say this is the worst FA i have ever read.

--TommyStardust 20:16, 27 July 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

In response:

1. The 2002-03 Ashes series was widely publicised as Waugh's last Ashes. The retirement of such a significant player from world cricket is a major event and the public interest in his performance in the series was intense, especially given his recent history of marginal performances in the game. Everyone wanted to know if he could pull another great performance out of the bag as a fitting swansong. His "Perfect Day" was the defining moment of the series, and to discuss the 2002-03 series without mentioning it would be missing the most important aspect of it. It is true that the name "Perfect Day" is unsourced in the article at the moment, but it was widely used in the media at the time, and is the title of both a book and a DVD about the day. The paragraph reads like a Holywood script because that's what it felt like at the time - it was a fairytale come true in the best sense of the phrase. It would be difficult to describe it accurately without making it sound like a Hollywood feel-good story, and what would be the point of trying? The reason it is such an important and memorable event is exactly because it was so much like a dream come true.

I disagree with this - a small mention would be fine, but to dedicate half of the commentary on the entire series to a 102 made in a losing Test, in which three other batsmen made higher scores, seems ridiculous. The defining thing about that series for me was simply how Australia dominated England in every department. Waugh was the captain and deserves some credit for that, but to call it 'Waugh's Ashes' in an attempt to liken it to 'Botham's Ashes' is ridiculous! Cheers — SteveRwanda 09:23, 31 July 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"The series began with what many regard in hindsight as one of the worst captaincy decisions of all time" - Who regards so? I agree this is worded in weasely terms. Hussein's decision was derided widely in the media and was on the lips of every Australian and English cricket fan that entire summer. We should find some sources and reword.

2. Yes, that reads poorly and needs rewording.

3. The match-fixing comments are important in the light of the history of cricket in general and match-fixing in particular. Marsh and Lillee's bet is still a major talking point about this series, and it is important to place it in the proper context given the shift in attitude and professionalism within the sport since. It may be able to be shortened a little, but most of what is said there has a definite point to it.

-dmmaus 23:29, 27 July 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Disagree with you on the match-fixing: the ashes were Botham's Ashes; so shouldn't there more about Botham's exploits than the betting? If Waugh's last ashes has a paragraph of his fairytale, why would Botham's feature almost exclusively of the betting? --TommyStardust 18:53, 28 July 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

What was presented to Michael Vaughan in 2005?[edit]

The article says "The Ashes urn itself is never physically awarded to either England or Australia" which suggests the trophy Vaughan is holding up here is a Waterford crystal replica. It looks to me like the real urn though, and made of wood. Which was it? Cheers — SteveRwanda 10:22, 30 July 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The trophy awarded to England at the end of the 2005 series was a large scale (about 2 foot high) replica of the Ashes urn made of Waterford crystal. In the picture you have asked about Vaughan is holding up a full scale replica of the urn made of plastic. Similar replicas are available at the Lord's shop for around £30. The real Ashes urn remainded in its glass case in the MCC museum. However the real urn will be going to Oz during the 2006-07 Ashes series and will be on display at the grounds. The urn is NOT a trophy, is nver presented to anyone and is owned by the MCC.PaddyBriggs 10:30, 30 July 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Are you sure? It seems to be quite hard to find information on the web about this, and it seems to be contradictory. This BBC article says: The team later enjoyed a Downing Street reception and went to Lord's to hand over the Ashes urn for safe-keeping. and then "It's been a long night," said Vaughan, who clasped the replica Ashes urn throughout the celebrations. which suggests that during the Oval celebrations they had the real thing, whereas later on and at Trafalgar Square they were using a replica. This is quite confusing and it would be nice if the article itself clarified it too. SteveRwanda 11:04, 20 September 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Additionally, the Earl of Darnley claims ownership of the urn for his family, with the urn being on permanent loan to the MCC, jguk 11:43, 20 October 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Lillee and Mash betting incident[edit]

Why is more space given to this minor incident that to many important series? This seems perverse as it is an off-field matter, and the article concludes had no impact on the outcome of the match in question. Can we get rid of it, or perhaps move it somewhere else? --John Price 10:38, 25 August 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The Ashes Series[edit]

The first line of this entry reads:

"The Ashes is a Test cricket contest played between England and Australia - it is one of cricket's fiercest and most celebrated rivalries and the oldest in international cricket dating back to 1882."

I think this is misleading. The Engalnd / Australia contest dates to 1861, the first test match was 1877. 'The Ashes' is no more than a name imposed on a pre-existing series and only became established as such in the twentieth century. starts its ashes history in 1861 and I think this is a more historically grounded approach.

In fact, much of the entry is devoted to confering an ananchoristic structure on the Ashes, pretending it is defined event like the Ryder Cup or the Americas cup, with a start date, trophy, organisational structure etc. The Ashes is no such thing - e.g. has anyone any evidence that the 1890's matches were believed to be part of the Ashes series? As far as I am aware, the first official decision relating to the Ashes was when the 1977 test match was declated by the relevant cricket boards to be a non-Ashes contest. Until then, it was only media talk.

Also the 'symolising the death of English Cricket' idea can be overdone. The underlying myth that English cricket is a senitent being which was killed by Australia, cremated and then somehow goes in search of its own remains is incoherent. The Ashes name is just a weak joke, not a metaphor for anything.

--John Price 21:44, 30 June 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Hm. You make some good points. and I think the article should be revised based on them. I just did a search of what Cricinfo has published online of Wisden; the term first crops up in the actual texts in 1905 [6], and that's, as you say, almost a joking reference to the 1883 tour. After that, no mention until 1926 (when it starts to crop up rather often, possibly related to the "return of the urn" to MCC in 1927?). Since the article primarily is about the Australia v England cricket series, the events prior to 1882 should also be treated.
However, as you say the term was used by the media, and Plum Warner's book was entitled How we recovered the Ashes, so I think it was used a fair bit. Haven't read that much about it though.

~~~~ Sam Vimes | Address me 13:18, 25 September 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I've just been reading The Oval Reflections, David Norrie, Vision Sports Publishing, 2005, ISBN 1-9053260-5-X. It's a "coffee table" book (ie large page size and lots of pictures) about The Oval. On page 149 it says: "Brooks' Ashes joke was actually forgotten until 1894 when it was resurrected in a book. There had been no mention of 'The Ashes' in contemporary reports until then. The Ashes final seal of approval came when 'Plum' Warner published his account of his 1903-4 tour to Australia and called it How We Recovered the Ashes." If it had mentioned the name of the 1894 book I would have modified the article accordingly, but as it is I'm not sure whether I should make any changes. JH 18:16, 6 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
The author of that 1894 book would be C.P. Moody. The title is probably Australian Cricket and Cricketers (Adelaide, 1894). Robertson-Glasgow 23:08, 10 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Length of 19th century tours[edit]

"The tours were shorter in the 1880s and 1890s than people have grown accustomed to in more recent years, possibly owing to the extended travelling time (the sea journey between the two countries took at least a month)."

The tours had fewer Tests, but I'm not sure that they were shorter. In fact I was under the impression that they were generally longer, because more other matches were played. It was only a gradual process by which the Tests became the be-all and end-all of the tours. I've just chosen 1884 at random, and used the Search > Scorecard Oracle at [7] to see what matches the Australian tourists played in England that year. Their first match began on 12th May and their last on 11th September. They played 31 matches in all. JH 19:26, 27 September 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Entire Matches Section Needs Complete Rewrite[edit]

This article on the whole is fine except for one entire section which is seriously flawed by glaring omission and by an element of POV. That section is "The Matches" which needs a complete overhaul to give it a proper historic and world perspective.

By historic perspective I would point out the complete absence of several series that were notable in their day and had an enormous bearing on the continued success and popularity of the competition. How the famous 1902 series can be completely omitted is absolutely staggering and the same may be said of several (not one or two) other series as well.

I can best illustrate what I mean by world perspective through an example. But essentially it means the quality of a series in terms of current playing standards. Until 1972, both England and Australia could always put a world-class team into the field. Then, with the loss of several top-class batsmen, England found themselves picking the likes of Bumble and, worst of all, Denness. All good enough at county level, true. Decline set in and England's standards fell throughout the seventies and eighties until rock bottom was reached in the nineties. Fortunately, with Duncan Fletcher and centralised contracts and the benefits of the Academy system being realised, England has recovered since 2001 and at long last we could again watch an Ashes series between two world-class teams in 2005. Australia did not suffer the same long-term decline as England because their grassroots setup has always been reliable and productive, but Australia did take a severe knock from Packer. From the initial announcement by Packer in 1977 that he was setting up WSC until the arrivals of Steve Waugh and Mark Taylor in 1989, Australia's team was poor: often badly led, undisciplined, uncommitted and generally lacking good Test players.

Throughout the 1980s when Australia was in post-Packer disarray and England was in decline, cricket on the world stage was dominated by West Indies. Few could withstand their batting and bowling superiority and the only real competition that West Indies faced came from New Zealand and India.

All of which means that if there is any historical period in the existence of the Ashes that should be glossed over, it is not the 1900s (or any decade between then and the 1970s) but the 1980s. And also the 1990s when the competition was so one-sided it was beyond a joke.

It does not surprise me in the least to find the 1981 series being given pride of place and yet here again there is a glaring omission. Where is Mike Brearley? When all the tabloid hype about the most over-rated player in history has died down and we take an objective look at a series which involved two quite ordinary teams (in the context of world cricket at the time and their inferiority to West Indies), we discover that the key difference in that series was the reappointment of Brearley as England captain before the Third Test. Yet this article, which has so much to say about a trivial betting story, does not even mention Mike Brearley.

The heading "Repopularising of the Ashes" is completely misleading. The Ashes has always been popular, except possibly in the 1990s when England was so bad it was barely worth bothering with. This section has been used to skim past a critical period in the competition's history. The author displays an indecent haste in his impatience to reach Bodyline and then again to get from there to his tabloid idol in 1981. The section "The Invincibles" should be about the 1948 series only: instead it is also about Laker, Benaud, Boycott, Lillee and is a very short chapter given that it covers 30-odd years.

No one admires Steve Waugh more than I do, but why does he get such a eulogy when the article makes no mention even in passing of Ashes legends like Trumper, Rhodes, Sutcliffe, Hammond, Lindwall, Miller, Davidson, Trueman?

This section The Matches is quite appalling really. It has no historical perspective whatsoever and it presents a view that is completely unbalanced and seriously misleading to an uniformed reader. I don't have time to spend on rewriting it myself but I would hope to see those who have contributed to it make suitable amends. I will diarise this for a few weeks and if it is not improved in the meantime, I am going to tag it with something appropriate from Category:Wikipedia maintenance templates.

You could start by removing 1981 and including 1902: just that change alone (plus an explanatory note at the top that sub-sections re other series are being prepared), would restore the balance and invite contributions re all the other series that are worth mentioning. --BlackJack | talk page 14:43, 28 October 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I agree with most of this (especially the call for the inclusion of 1902), except for the removal of 1981. Whatever you think of the standard of the sides, it was a remarkably exciting series that captured the imagination of the public. Actually, I don't think that the sides were at all bad. England had Boycott, Gooch (admittedly not then the force he later became), Gower, Botham, Knott, Bob Taylor and Willis. Australia had Alderman and Lillee, who in 6 Tests took 81 wickets between them yet finished on the losing side, Border and Rod Marsh, but on paper look the weaker side of the two by a fair margin. Anyway, when/if time permits I'll see if I can do something about that section. JH 15:50, 28 October 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
What do you expect when most of the section was written by a Norwegian? ;) Seriously, Jack's points are well made and I hope either Jack or JHall will take the time to rewrite it with the proper historical perspective. :) Sam Vimes | Address me 16:05, 28 October 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
You must be the leading Norwegian cricket expert. :) Jack has now provided an excellent rewrite of the section. I've expanded it in a few places, and hope to do so in a few more when time permits. JH 20:41, 30 October 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The ultimate[edit]

Why not just say the Ashes is the ultimate? Whose feelings would this truth hurt?

It is the second oldest contest in World sport, of course it is the ultimate in cricket. 00:04, 30 October 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

If you want to call it the ultimate because it's the oldest international cricket contest, then you could be on shaky ground. IIRC, Canada v USA was first played in the 1860s. As an Englishman, I would say that The Ashes is the ultimate cricketing contest, but an Indian or a Pakistani might claim that it is India v Pakistan. In other words, I think that calling something the "ultimate" can't help but be POV. JH 21:52, 31 October 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

The Ashes is the second oldest competition in World sport. The Ashes Urn has icon status in both countries and is reportedly insured for a seven figure sum.

I don't even know what the Pakistan v India trophy looks like and I don't care.

Millions of Asians follow the Ashes.

THE NEUTRALITY OF THIS ARTICLE IS IN DISPUTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I never give up... 07:12, 1 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Neither do we. Please edit constructively. — Moondyne 07:31, 1 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I have changed the article to say it is cricket's most celebrated rivarly.

And I am going to keep on changing it back - FOREVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 22:38, 1 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]


I see that someone has just inserted the claim that the first Test, in 1877, was played at Sunbury, Victoria. I believe that they have been confused by the fact that it was after a social match played at Sunbury by the English touring team on the 1882-3 tour that the bails (or whatever it was) were burnt to provide the famous trophy. The article for Sunbury has quite a good account of this in its History section, some of which might be worth cannibalising. JH 21:47, 31 October 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Intervals between The Ashes[edit]

After reading the article i was confused about how often The Ashes are actually played. At the moment the article states The Ashes are played at "approximately two yearly intervals" - it should be made clear that they are played in Australia a year and a half after they are played in England, but they are played in England two and a half years after an Australian series. Jpag99 18:06, 12 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

2005 Ashes[edit]

User:Johnsjollygiants has added a large section on the 2005 Ashes, which I feel is too extensive. Basically, we've already got an article on the 2005 Ashes, and this article doesn't really need to get any larger (though we may need a little bit more on the 1920s to 1990s series). It was a good series, but that's no reason to have as much content on that as for the entire history up to 1900. Sam Vimes | Address me 22:10, 19 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It's a bit too POV for my liking, with words like "pitiful" scattered around. The amount of detail on the First Test is certainly excessive, especially as it was the least exciting of the five. However he makes one good point, in bringing out the significance of the injury to McGrath before the Second Test. JH 22:23, 19 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

How Best to Cross-Reference?[edit]

There is more detail about some of the Ashes series in England in the relevant articles in the "nnnn English cricket season" series, where nnnn is the year. One approach would be to copy all that detail into the Ashes article, but that would make it far too long. So it seems better to cross-refer to these articles. The question is the best way to do it. One approach would be to add them all to the "See Also" section. The trouble with that is that it would mean something like forty links in one great block. Perhaps a better approach would be to put them within the text at the points that they are relevant. So in the section on the 1948 tour, for instance, one could say som,ething like: "Further details can be found at 1948 English cricket season". JH 19:08, 20 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Or put all the Ashes season articles under a single category and put this category under "See also" ? Tintin (talk) 01:39, 21 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That seems like a good idea. I see that there already is a category "The Ashes", so I could add that category to the relevant English season articles. JH 09:17, 21 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I've now finished doing this, with the exception of 1880 and 1882, which were pre Ashes, and 1884, 1886 and 1981, where the "English cricket season" articles as yet have nothing at all about the Test series. JH 19:34, 22 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Proactive protection[edit]

Given the impending resumption in hostilities (posh for the next series starts in a couple of days), I can foresee a huge amount of vandalism on this article, from both hemispheres. I'm wondering if an application should be made, before the event, to protect the article (semi or full), so we can all avoid needless reverts. As a relatively new wiki contributor, I'm not sure if that's even possible, or how to do it... but if it is possible, would it be a good idea? Thoughts? Carre 18:38, 21 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I'm not sure it's necessary to do it now. It can be done very quickly later if it turns out to be a problem. Stephen Turner (Talk) 19:48, 21 November 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]


Is there any way to get to desist from plugging his (I would guess) "Ashes Bashes" game page, something which has no relevance to the history of the Ashes? JH 18:18, 7 December 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

error in description of 1882 ashes test[edit]

The current text says

"Australian bowler Fred Spofforth refused to give in, declaring, "This thing can be done." He devastated the English batting, taking the final four wickets while conceding only two runs"

Several sources (including the next paragraph of the Wikipedia article) confirm that Boyle took the last wicket in the innings. In fact the scorecard in cricinfo indicates that Boyle took both the 9th and the 10th wickets to fall. 21:06, 18 December 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

NB: this needs expansion[edit]

There are a number of places where "NB: this needs expansion" is written in the article. Should they be there? I haven't seen them in other articles. 11:59, 26 December 2006 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"Great" players[edit]

A fairly minor issue in an excellent article I admit, but I take issue with Damien Martyn and Justin Langer being included as "Great Australian players" in the 1990s section, althoguh undoubtably very good players they are not greats, and there can be no justification for including either of them ahead of Matthew hayden who is clearly better than both. Similarly, Langer is later referred to alongside McGrath and Warne as "three of Australia's greatest cricketers". And finally, what's so unorthodox about Shane Warne?

Peate's explanation[edit]

The article has him saying, "I had no confidence in Mr Studd, sir, so thought I had better do my best." We need a source for this quote; the original version, apparently provided by W.G., has been paraphrased far too often. Robertson-Glasgow 20:39, 27 August 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

usage of "tournament" as opposed to series[edit]

An editor removed the word "tournament" from the opening sentence, claiming the Ashes did not constitute a tournament. According to a definition of 'tournament' is "a sporting competition in which contestants play a series of games to decide the winner". [8]. Additionally the media and the public routinely refer to the Ashes as a tournament. Manning (talk) 23:19, 22 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I think you are wrong — [9] v [10]. Your assertion that "the media and the public routinely refer to the Ashes as a tournament" needs to be backed up with some evidence to show it is more frequent in occurance than "the media and the public routinely refer to the Ashes as a series". Daniel 00:12, 23 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Oh, and this takes the cake — the same dictionary you use to assert that the ashes are a tournament defines "series" as "[a] number of games played by the same two teams, often in succession"[11]. Given Wikipedia uses the most specific and logical term to define something, the definition provided for series at the dictionary you cite is far more accurate than tournament. Daniel 00:23, 23 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
With respect, your dismissive and derogatory tone in your second comment above is unbecoming of an administrator. I appreciate that you took the time to explain your revert in your first comment however.
I reverted on the grounds that it was stated that "the ashes does not constitute a tournament". I quoted the definition to prove that the definition is legitimate. Additionally your own Google listing indicates that the BBC refer to the Ashes as a "tournament" as do many other major agencies. I'll concede that "series" is more common according to the Google stats, but this does not mean that "tournament" is invalid. I should not have to point out that discussion is how things usually get done around here.
As stated, I reverted the original post on the grounds that the author claimed it was not a valid usage of the word "tournament" when it so very clearly is. With my first revert I posted an explanation of my actions. This was then reverted back by an administrator without any discussion or reference to my comments. As you are both administrators you would be aware that this is not generally accepted behaviour. I am perfectly happy for it to remain as series if consensus is that it is the better term, but discussion and civil behaviour would be appreciated. Manning (talk) 00:37, 23 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
On the issue of content, would linking to Test cricket#Competitions with "series" be any better? It could be argued that "series" is being used in a technical cricket sense here, as "tournament" definitely means something else in cricket (and many sports). Just a fly-by suggestion (as I noted on my talk page, given the difference of opinion on whether my phrasing of my comments is acceptable, I will be minimising the animosity and illwill by steering clear of this issue while it is still under contention). Cheers, Daniel 01:30, 23 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It's not under contention. You have demonstrated that "series" is a more common term and I completely and happily accept that without dispute. The illwill comes from your usage of phrases such as "no factual basis" when there clearly is a factual basis for the term "tournament". In future, try to discuss things rather than creating hostility and being dismissive.Manning (talk) 01:35, 23 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

For the record, my objection to the use of the word "tournament" was based on the definition in the Concise Oxford Dictionary: "any contest of skill between a number of competitors, esp. played in heats". JH (talk page) 09:55, 23 November 2007 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It is international cricket's most celebrated rivalry and dates back to 1882[edit]

sorry, but an india-pak series makes the ashes look like a tea party. the ashes are no longer competetive because australia are excellent, and england quite pathetic. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:57, 31 March 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

multiple images in infobox[edit]

I'd rather raise the issue here than just revert again. The infobox works a lot better with just one image (and that's certainly the way the infobox template is designed to work), and IMHO the most appropriate one is the photograph of the ashes urn. A branded logo for promotion of the next England-hosted ashes series is less relevant to an article on the history of the series as a whole which has for most of its history not been sponsored by npower in any way. --VinceBowdren (talk) 15:16, 20 October 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

I whole-heartedly agree. The nPower Ashes 2009 logo is inappropriate as the top image for an article on The Ashes from 1877. --RobertGtalk 15:37, 20 October 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]


The "sponsorship" section needs expanding if it is to be kept. The history of the sponsorship of The Ashes seems an interesting topic, but I think the current newsflash about npower's sponsorship of English home internationals is not relevant. What do other people think? --RobertGtalk 09:46, 18 November 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]

It seems irrelevant to me too. npower are spomsoring Englamd's home Tests, not The Ashes as such. It belongs in England cricket team and/or History of the England cricket team from 1945. JH (talk page) 18:03, 18 November 2008 (UTC)Reply[reply]


I honestly have no idea why England have had two innings and Australia have had only one, but despite that they are drawn right now, and I came here expecting that it would explain __why__ this occurs. Surely they keep batting until all men are out? (talk) 05:49, 14 July 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

See Cricket#Results: "In the traditional form of the game, if the time allotted for the match expires before either side can win, then the game is declared a draw." --RobertGtalk 07:55, 14 July 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That explains why this is different to other tests. So how long does an Ashes match go for? That's something that really should be in the article. (talk) 10:52, 14 July 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Currently matches are scheduled for for five days. (In the past the number of days has varied.) That applies to all Tests nowadays, I think, not just Ashes ones. JH (talk page) 16:41, 14 July 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]


omgenglandwontheashesimsoexcitedcongratsallbrits ReluctantPhilosopher (talk) 18:46, 23 August 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

"Dowager Countess of Darnley"[edit]

Since the late tenth Earl, Major Peter Stuart Bligh (1915-1980) died unmarried, the "Dowager Countess" would be the mother of the present Lord Darnley, Adam Ivo Stuart Bligh, 11th Earl (born 1941). His mother, the third wife of the 9th earl, is Rosemary Potter, daughter of Edmund Basil Potter; since her remarriage in 1963 she has been Mrs Pierre Trasenster. Should one doubt the veil story attributed to the "Dowager Countess of Darnley"?--Wetman (talk) 08:14, 24 August 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Here's a reputable citation for the veil story, found by a Google search on Ashes veil Darnley. JH (talk page) 09:18, 24 August 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That's Cricinfo, it's not sourced, and really, why would anyone put the remains of a veil in a trophy? It's got some currency in the internet but where did it come from?Asnac (talk) 15:06, 30 December 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]
As it happens, I was given the book "The Toughest Tour" for Christmas. Written by Huw Turbervill and published by Aurum Press in 2010, it tells the story of England's post-WW2 tours of Australia. In the Introduction, it tells the story of the creation of the Ashes legend. On page xiii it says: "... his wife is said to have asked that a bail - believed to have been used in the third match of the series - be burnt, the remains then poured into a terracotta urn and given to Bligh, (In 1998, Lord Darnley's daughter-in-law said they were, actually, the remains of her mother-in-law's veil, but that story is not nearly as romantic, at least for cricket devotees.)" It's always possible that the daughter-in-law misheard "bail" as "veil". I think both possibilities, bail and veil, need to be mentioned in the article. We will never know for sure which is correct. JH (talk page) 17:44, 30 December 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]
It is retained in the main body of the article as, right or wrong, it has gained currency so it needs to be there. But does your source actually give any details about where the story came from? This is the sort of story that could have arisen from an off the cuff remark, or even a joke, and then by incremental repetition, bouncing around the internet, and being copied uncritically into books by cricket writers, has gone on to acquire the status of truth. There are people who try to put hoax 'facts' into Wikipedia,-and maybe it is one of these - without a source we can't be sure. It would be useful if someone knew where this remark was first recorded so that this could be noted in the article.Asnac (talk) 09:17, 1 January 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]
That source gives no more details, I'm afraid. The book is about post-war Ashes series in Australia, and therefore only covers earlier history briefly to set the scene. I think the "veil" version is unlikely to be a hoax, but as I suggested it might be the result of the Dowager Countess having misheard her mother-in-law, since "bail" and "veil" sound very much alike. JH (talk page) 10:45, 1 January 2011 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Perfume Jar?[edit]

The article states that the Ashes urn "may originally have been a perfume jar". It is surprising that nobody knows. Has anybody looked for adverts in 19th Australian newspapers and magazines for similar perfume jars, or considered what else it might originally have been? During its recent restoration were its contents temporarily removed? Perfume oil might still be traceable by mass spectroscopy on a small sample of its inner surface - AG, Stockport, UK —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:50, 27 August 2009 (UTC)Reply[reply]

More Comedy?[edit]

I quote "England currently holds The Ashes, after beating Australia 2-1 to regain them in the 2009 Ashes series which took place in England and, for the first time, Wales." - Wales is NOT in England ! However it is in Britain. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:44, 13 July 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Please stick to chronological order when adding a new section. I've moved this to the end, to make it so. No, Wales is not in England. That's why the bit you quoted says "in England and, for the first time, Wales".

Ashes Urn[edit]

This section is a complete mess. The intro contains a succinct summary of the historical background but any sense in this section is smothered by a welter of trivial references.--Jack Upland (talk) 03:53, 27 November 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Reginald Brooks Link incorrect[edit]

This link to Reginald Brooks appears to be incorrect: "On 2 September a more celebrated mock obituary, written by Reginald Brooks ...". It links to a Reginald Brooks who was born in 1896, so he is unlikely to be the same Reginald Brooks who wrote the obituary in 1882. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:30, 29 December 2010 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Overdetailed content[edit]

In my opinion we shouldn't be trying to describe every Test in this article, as now seems to be the case. Surely the right place for that sort of detailed information is in the separate articles for each series? Summaries of the results of each series, together with mentioning truly outstanding performances and exceptional games, should be enough. Otherwise the article is going to become very long, as well as with an undue emphasis on recent series compared to older ones.

I have to agree fully with this anonymous comment. Even the 'separate articles' are unduly detailed for an encyclopedia, given that many adequate books are available, and online records are crammed with the minutiae. Cheers, Bjenks (talk) 05:17, 24 July 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
OK, since this point is not contested, I will work soon on this over-elaboration and duplication, which is making it very tedious and difficult to access good information on the subject. I must add there is more duplicated (and sometimes conflicting) content in articles on The Ashes urn, Ivo Bligh, Florence Morphy/Bligh and Rupertswood. I have no doubt there are others. It will be a major task to reorder and properly source such material on a popular myth, but a start must be made on it. Bjenks (talk) 02:50, 29 August 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]


I think the statement that the ashes is "one of the most celebrated rivalries in international sport" is unworthy of being included in the article without evidence and decent methodology for comparing international rivalries across different sports.

Originally I placed a citation needed and dubious (incorrect us of dubious on my part I now realize) tag here and it was removed by another editor who simply said "it's doesn't say the most celebrated, just one of the most." This line of reasoning seems to suggest that as long as the claim is not "the most celebrated rivalry" no citation is needed to back up the statement? In my opinion encyclopedic articles should be held to a higher standard than "as long as a claim is not too bold no citations/evidence is needed to back it up."

There are two questions that need to be addressed:

  • How do you assess how celebrated an international rivalry is within one sport?
  • How do you rank/compare international rivalries across different sports?

The first question is probably pretty easy to deal with. The Ashes does not have the tv viewership that the India Pakistan rivalry but it does have a decent number of total viewers for a cricket rivalry. The second question is going to be a lot harder to answer. Without a good answer to the second question it seems that the statement should be relaxed to only consider international cricket rivalries.

DouglasCalvert (talk) 00:42, 24 July 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Well! Let's say here it is a very highly celebrated rivalry and has been going for well over a century. It's not as "international" as the America's Cup is today. (Though even that was contested by only two nations for most of its existence.) Maybe DouglasCalvert can reduce the Ashes' celebrity status by presenting a long list of more celebrated rivalries But then he'd better go for cover. :) Cheers, Bjenks (talk) 05:28, 24 July 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Bjenks, "a highly celebrated rivalry" ("very highly" sounds awkward to my ears) seems like a great alternative. I would like to point out that I have no desire to "reduce the celebrity status" of the ashes. My aim is to ensure that wikipedia articles have a WP:NPOV and that the content in the articles is well researched. The fact that I would need to "run for cover" if I reduced the celebrity status of the ashes seems to indicate that there are some people on wikipedia that do not share my desire for WP:NPOV. DouglasCalvert (talk) 20:13, 25 July 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
Fully in agreement, but let's also not lose the option to share a grin once in a while! Cheers, Bjenks (talk) 00:28, 26 July 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Statistical summary[edit]

The section Summary of results and statistics includes a second paragraph of minutiae which has a couple of problems: (1) it lacks verification; (2) it needs to have the date of its currency qualified by an 'As of' template. E.g., I might want to update the figure for "10 wickets in a match" because Stuart Broad has just taken 11 in the Durham Test. But I can't because the figures in the article are unverified and undated. Bjenks (talk) 20:29, 12 August 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Combine with the article on the urn?[edit]

Please see my query at Talk:The Ashes urn, about possibly recombining that article with this one. W. P. Uzer (talk) 20:12, 4 September 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Agreed—and see related comments in #Overdetailed content above. The urn is logically the subject of a section of this article. Bjenks (talk) 02:47, 5 September 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Not up to date : no mention of Winter 2013-14 series[edit]

This is out of date, since Summer 2013. No mention is made of the change to the Ashes calendar (a link to some rationale, e.g. an official press release, would be nice) and the conesquent 2013-14 series.

--Matt Whyndham (talk) 11:11, 30 November 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

OK, but WP is not a news bulletin. This article does not need to duplicate the detailed content of that on the current series. Some of us think the Ashes article is already labouring under too much gratuitous content which belongs elsewhere. Nor can the List of Ashes series (which is linked from the article) be definitively edited until the writing is on the wall. Cheers, Bjenks (talk) 13:32, 30 November 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I've slightly tweaked the wording of the lead, to make clear that the current series is linked from there. Ghmyrtle (talk) 14:38, 30 November 2013 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Women's Ashes[edit]

Despite women's cricket's patron saint Betty Archdale's refusal to be associated with "the male concepts of Tests and Ashes", Australia's modern promoters have gone one better by establishing "the Women's Ashes" trophy (made in Kyneton, as the article says). I see, too, that some enthusiasts are now blurring the difference by referring to this recent invention as simply "the Ashes". This liberty cannot, of course, be tolerated by devotees of the male game. My suggestion is that a more discriminating contraction be adopted by the ladies. What about "the WAshes", for instance? Bjenks (talk) 02:17, 3 February 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

No mention of The Ashes pre-dating federation[edit]

First, I admit not to have read every word, but I couldn't find mention that The Ashes have been played for longer than Australia has been federated. I think it worth spelling this out somewhere for readers wondering why The Ashes is so revered. You know, Australia was first a collection of bickering colonies, then a cricket team that could beat the Poms, and then a country. Ubuntu2 (talk) 14:22, 1 May 2014 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Bickering is probably over stating things. There was rivalry and petty bickering on some things but there was also a shared feeling of where the colonies saw their place in the world. Federation was a long process but it seems a logical conclusion to the shared interests and desires that existed for some time before then. But yes the Ashes were played before 1901 and the Australian first class cricket competition predates that too.Tigerman2005 (talk) 01:37, 20 July 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

2005 and beyond section[edit]

So we get a test by test rundown of the English wins yet the two 5-0 series wins by Australia just get a one liner about the result? Could we try and keep in consistent and neutral? I have no problem in providing an in-depth rundown of those particularly tests but the more obvious solution would be to curtail the sections that talk up English wins. Thoughts? Tigerman2005 (talk) 05:15, 20 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Given that there are separate articles about each series, I agree that this overarching article should not go into great detail. Otherwise it's in danger of becoming extremely long. One paragraph about each series should normally be enough. JH (talk page) 10:11, 20 February 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]
I see not much has changed. 1071 words on English series wins. 101 on Australian wins. Individual English wins get more space than 5-0 Australian series wins. Unless there is a reasonable objection I am going to be bold soon and reduce the commentary for all series to roughly the same size. I'm of the thought that the detail listed for some of these series are best placed in individual articles rather than in this general article. Or else this article is going to spiral further and further out of control. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Tigerman2005 (talkcontribs) 01:34, 20 July 2015 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Semi-protected edit request on 13 September 2019[edit]> SpencerDerek (talk) 19:07, 13 September 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

 Not done: it's not clear what changes you want to be made. Please mention the specific changes in a "change X to Y" format and provide a reliable source if appropriate. ‑‑ElHef (Meep?) 19:20, 13 September 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

Semi-protected edit request on 15 September 2019[edit]

change "Alistair Cook" to "Alastair Cook" (2 times) 2A02:810D:1540:35B0:5168:8ED1:51BF:62D2 (talk) 18:05, 15 September 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

 Done Awesome Aasim 05:47, 16 September 2019 (UTC)Reply[reply]

A Commons file used on this page or its Wikidata item has been nominated for deletion[edit]

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