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1930 Ashes

Australia led by Bill Woodfull toured England in the summer of 1930 for a 5 Test series. The tourists won the Ashes back after winning two of the matches and losing one, with the other two tests drawn.

The 21-year old Don Bradman on his maiden tour to England with just 4 Tests under his belt was the star of the series scoring a record 974 runs. His innings of 334 at Leeds was a ferocious, sustained assault such as cricket had never experienced. This knock paved the way for Australia's Ashes victory. His dominance was established by scoring  2,960 runs on tour at an average of 98.66, with scores of 236, 185, 252, 191, 254, 232 and 205, and capped by the then world record Test innings at Headingley.

Wisden summed up Bradman's record breaking run as "It is not too much to say that he took England and the whole cricket world by storm. Those who had seen him play in Australia were fully prepared for something out of the common but little would we dream that his progress would be of such a triumphal nature." 

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1930 Ashes

The Ashes: A brief history (28 June 2013)

The first Test match was played between England and Australia in 1877 at the MCG. The Ashes legend started 5 years later, after the ninth Test, played in 1882 at the Oval in London.

The third Australian team to tour England in 1882 achieved the unthinkable. Until then, the English had never been beaten on home soil, but Australia led by by WL "Billy" Murdoch shocked England, with the legendary WG Grace in their ranks, lost by seven runs with Aussie fast bowler Fred Spofforth taking 14 wickets for 90 runs.

The following day, a mock obituary ran in the Sporting Times "in affectionate remembrance of English cricket, which died at the Oval on 29th August, 1882". 

During the next tour to Australia in late 1882, a small terracotta urn was presented to the England captain Hon Ivo Bligh by a group of Melbourne women, led by Lady Clarke, after a friendly game that was played at Sir William Clarke's Rupertswood manor in Sunbury, Victoria. The contents of the urn are reputed to be the ashes of an item of cricket equipment such as a bail, or scarf, depending on which legend is true.

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