The Ashes Down Under 2013/14: Melbourne and Sydney

… although this could have been anywhere. Both Melbourne and Sydney have their own special place in the Ashes, with the traditional Boxing Day Test in Melbourne becoming part of the series, and Sydney turning pink to raise money for breast cancer awareness, but the cricket could have been played in a field just outside Oenpelli, and it would have made the same impact. Read More The Ashes Down Under 2013/14: Melbourne and Sydney

Learn to Love Cricket Here!

After only a few months, the Ashes are back! Starting in Brisbane on Thursday, Australia will try to win again in what feels like decades, and there will be many sleep-deprived people in England, dealing with a time difference that means play starts at midnight in the U.K. But we’re not quite there yet, so let’s use this spot to get into the mood and learn all about cricket’s charming oddities.

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Women’s Ashes 2013

Earlier this summer, our local cricket club was out recruiting new members. When I approached an older man to ask about the junior team, and whether my five-year-old daughter could join, he seemed happy about my plans and repeatedly assured me that the days when cricket was a boys’ sport were over. He then ruined it by telling me to “bring my husband and have a beer one evening,” but as far as the kid was concerned, it was no problem at all. When I later took her to a training session, that same attitude was echoed by other members of the club. “We’ll make a lady cricketer of her!” were the exact words, I think. Read More Women’s Ashes 2013

The Ashes by Any Means: Trent Bridge

Every two years, my love for cricket deepens just a little more. Two years is a long time to wait, but it’s finally here again: over the course of this summer, England and Australia will meet for a 25-day battle stretched out over several weeks. Most people find the idea of a day-long cricket match ridiculous, but a game devised by the most eccentric race on earth simply has to take it all a step too far. There are several forms of cricket these days, which means some games only last two or three hours, some last one sunny Sunday, and some, called Tests, last whole long weekends of four or five days. The Ashes are the most prestigious Test there is. Back in 1882, Australia won against England and rubbed it in with a newspaper obituary announcing the death of English cricket. Its ashes, most likely a burnt wooden bail that was used in the game, were taken to Australia in a little urn. Way to stretch a metaphor there, and also, seriously? But it turned out to be a good marketing trick if nothing else, and all Tests between England and Australia were referred to as The Ashes from that point. Whoever defeats the holder of the Ashes gets to take a little urn home. Cute. Read More The Ashes by Any Means: Trent Bridge