The Ashes

Back-to-back Ashes confirmed for 2013

Andrew Miller

January 28, 2011

Comments: 101 | Text size: A | A

Andrew Strauss and Ricky Ponting with a replica Ashes urn, Brisbane, November 24, 2010
The Ashes are the single biggest event in the calendars of both Australia and England's cricket boards © Getty Images
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2013 Ashes fixtures

England and Australia will play each other in ten consecutive Tests across two series home and away in 2013-14, and that could be followed by a further five-match series in 2015, after it was confirmed that the dates of the next Ashes series Down Under have been brought forward by a year.

The situation, which last occurred in 1974-75, has been forced upon the two boards by the competing demands of the 2015 World Cup, which is also scheduled to be held in Australia and which, had the 2014-15 Ashes gone ahead as planned, would have required England's cricketers to remain in the country for five months.

A proposal to bring England's next home series, in 2013, forward by a year was thwarted by the competing demands of the London Olympics. England's subsequent home Ashes summer is now expected to take place in 2015, a year earlier than the 2016 date originally proposed, with the traditional four-year home-and-away rotation expected to kick in from then on.

"It's always been our aim to break that cycle of two huge events in the same winter," Steve Elworthy, the ECB's marketing director, told ESPNcricinfo. "To ensure that the teams have better preparation time for the World Cup, this is the only solution, but I also think it's absolutely manageable. I believe the brand is strong enough, as we've seen this year. The home series is critical from our perspective to make sure our grounds are full, but when England head Down Under, they will be trying to replicate the performance that they've just produced."

Although the new dates have yet to be included into the Future Tours Programme, the proposed shift of England's home series to 2015 is potentially significant, as it takes the series away from the competing interests of football's Euro 2016 tournament, which would overshadow the build-up in June and July. Instead, the only other major sporting event in 2015 is the Rugby World Cup, set to take place in England at the end of the cricket season in October.

A major consideration for CA was the prospect of a new round of TV rights negotiations, as the current deal is set to expire in May 2013. With India due to tour in 2011-12, followed by South Africa, England and the World Cup, the board is anticipating four consecutive seasons of high-quality international cricket.

''The Ashes have an x-factor element that excites the Australian public," CA's spokesman Peter Young told The Sydney Morning Herald. "The Ashes make turnstiles spin and they drive the ratings up. In terms of the next media contract, it's an ideal starting point because it's a lucrative blue chip series and all the networks would give their eye teeth to get hold of it."

Andrew Miller is UK editor of ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (January 31, 2011, 23:30 GMT)

Too many games and, more to the point, too many Ashes games, in too short a period. It diminishes the importance of the contest.

Posted by Muyeen on (January 31, 2011, 13:53 GMT)

Hope it doesnt kill the ashes.. after so many years we have a very good england team and Ashes has become nail biting stuff again.. hope it continues... dont want both the teams fielding injured team with overall series tied at 4-4...

Posted by   on (January 31, 2011, 13:33 GMT)

I think it's ridiculous to take the other sporting events into the calculations. The games must be taken place as ussual and the cricket fans will deffinitely fill in the pavillions, especially noone would want to miss the Ashes.

Posted by Marto_TheLegend on (January 31, 2011, 11:03 GMT)

It looks like a lot of matches bunched up, but it should work out OK in the long run. The Ashes aren't just till 2015, but hopefully for centuries after, so this calendar shift is something we just have to endure.

Just a question though, why is the Asian Cup Football clashing with the Cricket WC in 2015?!

Posted by KingPunter on (January 31, 2011, 10:59 GMT)

Surprised by this. This will burnout players and will reduce charm of Ashes. I was expecting them to increase the rotation time, probably make it 5 or 6 from 4 yrs which is the current rotation time.

Posted by subbuamdavadi on (January 31, 2011, 9:28 GMT)

I think this will result in overkill. The Ashes are not only about the actual matches - there are the pre-match build-ups also to be considered. Commentators would not know when to stop dissecting the finished series and when to start building up the coming matches!! Moreover, throw in the T-20's and ODI's and I am sure both sets of players, spectators, supporters and commentators would be sick and tired of each other!!

Posted by gimc_tas on (January 31, 2011, 5:17 GMT)

So they would to change the 4 cycles so there is no conflight between the Ashes and the Wolrd Cup. BUT .. the 2014-15 World Cup (in Australasia) will then be followed by the 2015 Ashes in England - so it just changes the disadvantage from England to Australia. AND .. the next time England hosts the World Cup, it will be immediately followed (in the same season) by an Ashes in England! Administrators really think it through!

Posted by brisCricFan on (January 31, 2011, 4:16 GMT)

@ ravithecricbuff - why are we talking about Eng v Aus here and not about India... simply because the article is about Ashes back to back series... It never ceases to amaze me how commentors want to twist the blog to be about India being the best... that is nothing to do with this story... go find an article about India to wave your flag about... but having read them, chances are you already have and probably a few on the recent NZ v Pak series too... Now back to the story, one of the big things about the current gaps between the series is the changes and growth in between by these two ultra-competitive sides. With so much happening in so short a time, I can't see that happening. It could end up the same 13 players because the winners are reluctant to change and the losers (especially the touring party) not wanting to look in a panic over a bad situation. That won't be good for cricket or audience numbers to roll out to see the same underperformers...

Posted by MrKricket on (January 31, 2011, 3:03 GMT)

By the end of it all we'll be down to 3rd XIs for both teams with the injury tolls! Brad Hodge might get a game then! Has Mark Ramprakash retired?

Posted by candyfloss on (January 30, 2011, 19:02 GMT)

Whatever happened to Adam Smith's Law of Diminishing marginal utility.

Posted by ravithecricbuff on (January 30, 2011, 17:58 GMT)

vijaysrivatsan on (January 30 2011, 05:41 AM GMT) to all those who still doubt indias rankings, here are the results for indias latest test tours away from india 1. West indies - won 2. Endland - Won 3. Australia - Lost (1-2, sydney test could have been a no result) 4. South africa - drew (1-1) And i dont have to comment about Indias result with other lesser ranked teams And this is inspite of the teams giving tracks which are favarable to home teams. Nowadays, india never gives those spinner friendly tracks to any visiting teams as they earlier used to and still i can't remember any team winning the test series in India except (australia in 2004 and southafrica in early 2001) so try to forget the image of india and start realising the truth. India is the test's supremo.

Why here dude..Its Aus and Eng being talked here..2 of the overhyped teams!!

Posted by Wexfordwonder on (January 30, 2011, 17:49 GMT)

@ Nemi86

Do you even realise how nauseating and overhyped all tehe fuss about the Ashes is for the rest of us? Believe it or not your eurocentric views do not reflect what the rest of us feel.

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (January 30, 2011, 16:39 GMT)

The trouble with B to B Ashes is that actually one need time to get over the last one.Can the sofa's edge take the pressure? Thank god we are not in the same position regarding relative strength of sides-that would have been too grim!!!

Posted by erangakavi on (January 30, 2011, 16:06 GMT)

This is very unfair..Sri Lankan team is getting very less Test matches with Aussie and England...

Posted by SagirParkar on (January 30, 2011, 13:11 GMT)

i like the idea put forward by TFJones.. very sensible indeed..

back to the original article, surely 10 consecutive tests in a year followed by another 5 in the next 2 is surely an overkill.. and i feel that even the players of the two teams will feel so.. i hope that this particular turn of events doesnt kill the importance of the Ashes.. it is a prestigious series and when the same even recurs at very frequent intervals, it loses that importance and prestige...

Posted by tfjones1978 on (January 30, 2011, 10:58 GMT)

I would like to see test series become Home & Away. Australia VS England should be one series every 4 years home & away across 6 months (3 months in Australia, 3 months in England). The winner of the home & away series (eg: 6 tests, 8 tests or 10 tests) wins the series and the urn. For example, combining 2009 and 10/11 results together gives England the urn 5 wins to 2, whereas combining 2005 and 06/07 results gave Australia the urn 6 wins to 2 (or similar, I forget the 2005 result). This should occur for all series with teams playing against each other in 6 to 10 tests over 4 to 6 months for one (home & away) series.

Posted by sunny1307 on (January 30, 2011, 10:37 GMT)

now punter can play a home ashes,win it and retire in 2014 january........

Posted by thefountain on (January 30, 2011, 10:32 GMT)

What a joke. The Ashes was the last thing in cricket not over killed. Now what do they do? 15 tests virtually back to back. Stop boring everyone to death administrators.

Posted by   on (January 30, 2011, 10:24 GMT)

Waiting to watch Worlds best test team beat overhyped england

Posted by   on (January 30, 2011, 10:23 GMT)

Booooring. Want cricket to be a world game? Won't be if England and Australia keep thinking they're special - mind you, what are the chances of that? About zero. They still think they're 1 and 2.

Posted by   on (January 30, 2011, 8:33 GMT)

Is it a chance for Punter to set things right before he retires from TESTs?

Posted by satanswish on (January 30, 2011, 8:10 GMT)

Can they make that Ashes trophy much smaller, I wanna see both captains lifting the tiny trophy on their fingers.

Posted by CricFan78 on (January 30, 2011, 7:44 GMT)

It is quite clear that Eng and Aus are over-cooking the Ashes goose. The interest in Ashes was clear this year when no one turned up for day 5 at Gabba, more than half of MCG appeared even before final session started on day 1. What was Ashes score btw? Did anyone bother?

Posted by Rocketman1 on (January 30, 2011, 6:17 GMT)

Long Live the Ashes. This great contest between England and Australia shouldn't have to make space for any other cricketing contest. If anything the rest of the cricketing world should stop and watch. This is what spawned test cricket so if anything we should show some respect. As for India being number one....seing as they make the rules of that ranking system and keep changing it to suit them its not even a half decent indicator of how good they are. But hey, even when India were crap they kept on going on about how good they were anyway. The best way to celebrate Test Cricket; Ashes.

Posted by vijaysrivatsan on (January 30, 2011, 5:41 GMT)

to all those who still doubt indias rankings, here are the results for indias latest test tours away from india

1. West indies - won 2. Endland - Won 3. Australia - Lost (1-2, sydney test could have been a no result) 4. South africa - drew (1-1)

And i dont have to comment about Indias result with other lesser ranked teams

And this is inspite of the teams giving tracks which are favarable to home teams. Nowadays, india never gives those spinner friendly tracks to any visiting teams as they earlier used to and still i can't remember any team winning the test series in India except (australia in 2004 and southafrica in early 2001)

so try to forget the image of india and start realising the truth. India is the test's supremo.

Posted by Vishnu27 on (January 30, 2011, 3:02 GMT)

chokkashokka: Why even read an Ashes article if you're so certain? Sadly for you (& "the hearts and minds and the money of a billion plus") your vaunted cricket team is governed by an essentially corrupt board that cannot even organise the stadia necessary for the latest World Cup (mere weeks away). As for being "ready to rumble": tell me when are India going to produce the fast men necessary for this "rumble" & batsmen who are not home-town flat track bullies & can stomach a sustained barrage (i.e. >3 tests) of real chin music. Fact is, you don't have the fast men, nor the next generation of good batsmen necessary to take over the mantle of your aged warriors. Furthermore, test crowds are always abysmal in India with hollow empty grounds the norm. India is T20-centric & top heavy on biffers & bashers. Your socalled "lofty perch" is in name only & will be gone in the next test series or two. Right now, England would smoke India in a 5 match test series. I'm an Australian BTW

Posted by skkh on (January 30, 2011, 1:36 GMT)

What I saw at WACA this year showed that test cricket is not dead at least in Australia. Despite Australia's huge loss in the "Ashes" the turn out at the ground was unprecedented. I have been a regular at WACA for quite some time but this series against the poms was really great. And we pay a premium for our tickets unlike in other countries. Compare this to the Mohali test in India not very long back it was quite evident that test cricket in India was dead and buried. RIP.

Posted by   on (January 30, 2011, 1:20 GMT)

Can never get sick of the Ashes. Should make a 6 Test series like they use to . Bring back the rest day

Posted by hyclass on (January 30, 2011, 1:00 GMT)

By simple deduction,it should evident that the fault with australian cricket lies with its coaching, selection and management staff.I have heard that state cricket has become weak and is therefore responsible for the fall in fortunes of the australian team.State players with enviable records that arent selected or fall away after playing for their country, have well earned international reputations for success. They manage to play at high levels for their states, in county cricket where the england team is chosen, in 20/20 leagues world wide against high class opposition and against touring sides. If they are not selected, or after their selection, fall away, it is highly probable that a strong negative force is impacting their natural game. That can only be the selectors/coaching. Players must be chosen with a view to their best formats.Not all players can successfully adapt to the faster scoring game. Noone can blame players who arent selected or are chosen for their weakest format.

Posted by redneck on (January 29, 2011, 23:42 GMT)

@chokkashokka mate india drew home and away against south africa. shouldnt no.1s actually win something against the no.2? that lofty purch you speak of must be at eden gardens because its still half incomplete and never looks like being ready before the dead line!

Posted by   on (January 29, 2011, 23:37 GMT)

Anyone remember what the crowd figures have been like for the past few test series in India? While Australia may still be in a freefall in the rankings, and England certainly look to be on the way up, the fact is that there will always be massive interest in Ashes tests, and with the impact of the two forms of the pajama game, back to back to back Ashes campaigns can only be a good thing!

Posted by cote19 on (January 29, 2011, 22:58 GMT)

In all fairness , India have really won what? They may be number one but how many away test have they won ? Or for that matter One day World Champions or how long will they be number one test nation?

Posted by chokkashokka on (January 29, 2011, 21:50 GMT)

Both countries trying to be nostalgic and hanging on the vestiges of past glory....wake up this is the 21st century and the team that rules the roost sits comfortably on its lofty perch in India. Spare the reader of this website the hollow headlines about two teams of a by-gone era fighting each other with toothpicks....lets headline the contests involving the team that commands the hearts and minds and the money of a billion plus. Hail to the new king...lets get ready to rumble......viva India.

Posted by Sarva07 on (January 29, 2011, 19:23 GMT)

That's a really beautiful picture up there ;)

Posted by voma on (January 29, 2011, 17:53 GMT)

Absolutely ridicules , the ashes will become boring and meaningless . There has to be a reasonable amount of time , say 3 or 4 years between series . Also the reason why there is 5 tests , cos there is just so much interest in both countries . Cannot wait till Iandia and Sri lanka arrive in the summer !

Posted by bumsonseats on (January 29, 2011, 17:37 GMT)

longlivepakistan were do u get your information from. i live 140 miles from what i call my cricket team which is Lancashire in the uk, and have watched cricket there for over 40 years. we pay the most money in world cricket to watch England play a home series. every year i have to try and buy tickets for a test match and every year i do not always succeed. last year i went to lords and saw England v Bangladesh and it cost £40.00 which was very cheap the same seat for england v Pakistan was £90.00 a few weeks later. on my 1st visit to Australia i worked it out i could get 3 days of cricket for the same price as 1 in the uk. iv seen test grounds in india and S A with the with so little supports. so dont talk such rubbish

Posted by Aussasinator on (January 29, 2011, 16:39 GMT)

A case of overkill! Bringing the Ashes literally to Ashes!

Posted by longlivepakistan on (January 29, 2011, 14:44 GMT)

Iceborn999 good comments! I agree with u if eng win they show so much intrest in cricket but if there team lost only 1 or 2 series than they forgot cricket,but it's not hapned in aus,pak,ind and sa,these countries always show so much intrest in cricket and also their fans...

Posted by   on (January 29, 2011, 14:35 GMT)

@Landl47, I completely agree (and LOL about the Ricky Ponting remark).

Posted by popcorn on (January 29, 2011, 13:50 GMT)

This is fabulous news!More Ashes Tours mean more interest in Test Cricket, and no conttest is keener than The Ashes. To those who think Australia are going to get a licking next time - think again - remember the 5 nil whitewash of England IN AUSTRALIA in 2006 -07 after the 2005 2 -1 defeat by England in England? The Ashes contests have always been thrilling to watch - remember the thrashings England got in England before the 2005 Ashes?it's a cycle, and that's why The Ashes are iconic. Contests between India or South Africa versus England or Australia, home or away, are not as interesting.The scheduling speaks of great thought keeping in mind the other World Sporting Events.

Posted by   on (January 29, 2011, 13:36 GMT)

!5 tests in 3 years, absolutely ridiculous. Everyone will be bored stiff and wont give a damn where the ashes go.

Posted by maddy20 on (January 29, 2011, 13:21 GMT)

Hope they don't do it. Otherwise it will become an over-kill(like India-Srilanka matches in 2009-2010) and people would dread the mention of an Aus-Eng test matches!

Posted by   on (January 29, 2011, 12:02 GMT)

The only reason the Ashes may not be considered "Elite" test matches - is because Australia are so woefully weak. By the time the next one comes around I can see them being sixth at best. It's very disengenuous to point the finger at England and assume they are the weak party. We have 3 of the last 4 ashes series and the last one every one of the three victories was by an innings. At test evel there is a huge gulf between England and Australia - in Englands favour. Get used to it. As for South Africa - the last two series England played in SA wqe one one and drew one - dunno what all this "SA are elite" nonsene is - they only have two bowlers of international class in the whole country. If Morkel and Steyn don't fire or are injured SA are stuffed.

Posted by LALITHKURUWITA on (January 29, 2011, 10:22 GMT)

Both will be lost by Aussies if the current weakest links exist.

Posted by ArnavSingh on (January 29, 2011, 8:41 GMT)

I would like to share a not so popular quote " As soon as cricket sees money it loses its moral compass" Michael Holding

All said, short and brief

Posted by   on (January 29, 2011, 7:43 GMT)

Ridiculous. Ashes cricket is an event and should be something to enjoy the build up for. Looking forward to it is half the point. Too much cricket, everywhere. We remember the times when we even looked forward to an ODI. that doesn't happen anymore does it as if you miss one there's always one in the next day or two... and looks like we might feel the same about tests at this rate...

Posted by   on (January 29, 2011, 7:39 GMT)

@MartinC: Don't bother, you won't convince the wind-up merchant. Also, we play them every 2 years already, we need to play OTHER SIDES dearest ECB, please remember this! Australia aren't the only other Test Side in the world, we need to play NZ, WI, SL, etc!

Posted by khadeerk on (January 29, 2011, 6:37 GMT)

hyclass ...mate just for your info Haydens 380 was against Zimbabwe and not Bangladesh. Zimbabwe at that time were a pretty decent team as good as the poms of that period. Australia does not play Bangladesh as often as some teams do to better their averages. However the present Aussie team ought to tour Bangladesh now to regain some form and confidence.

Posted by Iceborn999 on (January 29, 2011, 5:35 GMT)

@Trickstar Mind your manners my friend. Just because you win once on our soil since the 80's does not mean you can be rude. If England were not winning you would show no interest in cricket....... As an Aussie I think back to back Ashes are ridiculous. Whats next back to back world cups? The Ashes is the best series in the sport, lets keep it that way and not have it shoved down our necks till we are sick of it......

Posted by kangaroussy on (January 29, 2011, 0:32 GMT)

@Wessels, great point, top ranked teams should always play 5 tests. But the Ashes will always be 5 tests, even if Australia become as dire a team as England were a decade or so ago.

Posted by Meety on (January 29, 2011, 0:10 GMT)

I am not pleased about that schedule. I always enjoyed the couple of years break between hostilities. An example of how this can be negative is - traditionally Oz & Sth Africa have played back to back (3 Test) series. The cricket does start to get a bit lame by the end of it. That being said I reckon there are few Oz players who would love to start a freah with another crack at the Poms right away! @HundredPercentBarcelonista - true, but that was 1992, that stuff doesn't happen these days players union sorted that out. @Paul Rone-Clark very funny but a good analogy.

Posted by hyclass on (January 28, 2011, 23:11 GMT)

There needs to be an amount of perspective introduced. Whenever one of the teams is overly dominant for an extended period,it tends to dilute the value of the outcome.Trying to cash in too much suggests that there is a belief that it is temporary.I have faith that england cricket is being run by high quality and perceptive people at this juncture.Whether the results continue or not, the quality of the play and fighting will remain and that is what fans come to see.When australia were too dominant, it lost some of its lustre.With due respect,i doubt that Hayden values his 380 against Bangladesh as highly as he might against this england team.Australian cricket is little better or worse in potential playing strength than in the past.Its management, coaching and selection processes have ruined the integrity of a well proven system.Once, it was the job of the opposition to fill our bowlers and batsmen with doubt. Our management now fill that role.All that remains is the coup de grace.

Posted by YorkshirePudding on (January 28, 2011, 22:27 GMT)

Its good to see the Aussies are as annoyed about this as us England fans, I did like the idea of pushing the Ashes back to 2015/16, unfortunately theres never any logic in the heads of the powers that be. 2013 is going to big year, Test championship (if it goes ahead), Back to Back ashes, playing Australia in 11 tests in 9 months might be considered a bit much, add on Englands away and early summer series and they may end up playing 16-18 tests in a 12 month period, just shows the Administrators dont give a hoot about the players.

Posted by Fazbut on (January 28, 2011, 21:10 GMT)

So, Cricket Australia have seasons 2011/2012 sorted with the Indians coming out, 2012/2013 with South Africa coming out (early), and 2014/2015 with an Ashes and World Cup summer. Unfortunately, that leaves a particularly weak 2013/2014 to deal with at the gate with either the West Indies or Pakistan set to fill the breach.

Not goot to put all your eggs in one basket.

Posted by Trickstar on (January 28, 2011, 21:09 GMT)

@landl47 Spot on mate, it's going to end up with English and Australians' fans feeling rather underwhelmed and as far as home & visiting fans, it's a tough ask for fans to be forking out for back to back Ashes Series, there going to end up killing the golden goose if their not careful.

Posted by Trickstar on (January 28, 2011, 21:01 GMT)

@jonesy2 I agree it is stupid, but saying you Australians don't rate it highly is comical, ,especially after all the comments on here before and during and now CA is rethinking it's all structure because of the pasting you took, but then again referring to yourselves as the elite nations is as funny as when England came to your back yard and completely humiliated you. I think even SA and India wouldn't rate a series against you very highly. You should be confined to just play Bangladesh and NZ from now on.

Posted by LawrieCAdelaide on (January 28, 2011, 20:48 GMT)

PURE GREED again rules the day. What made 2005 so great? The Anticipation of it all. Now we decide to over do it instead of be careful and not try and ruin a great series and product that no one else cares to play - a 5 Test series. Cricket Administrators decide to flood the market with "THE ASHES BRAND". The same thing will happen with new Big Bash comp - crowds are already dropping off and more matches will cause fans to stop dipping in their pockets. People can only afford so much! The Novelty factor has played a big part in the success of it Twenty 20. Too many games will kill it. Look at England's T20 comp - 16 games is too many.........some of these administrators are idiots!!

Posted by MartinC on (January 28, 2011, 20:45 GMT)

Jonsey2 - time to wake up and realise that as a test team Aus are not elite anymore and based on what was seen for the fringe players this last summer will not be again for a few years. Your ranked as 5 in the world as a test nation and that's about right.

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 20:44 GMT)

Just pray Australia find form by then - imagine them losing 7 of the 10 by an innings. I honestly can't think of anything worse than a 10 match Ashes, btw when will South Africa v India become a 5 match series? Can't we have a rule that say when #1 play #2 or #3 it will be a full series - the middle get 3 matches and when they play #7, #8 and #9 they make it 2 matches.

Posted by bumsonseats on (January 28, 2011, 20:29 GMT)

jonesy2 u r talking the normal tosh u seem to utter. ask any aussie cricketer worth their salt which gives him the biggest thrill and i bet i know the answer the ashes is ingrained too any england/australian cricketer. then ask cricket australia, england put bums on seats down under.

Posted by A_Vacant_Slip on (January 28, 2011, 20:04 GMT)

The Barmy Army were singing "Can we play you every week"? at times in this ashes. Now wouldn't that be nice! @Jonesy; You have mentioned the word "England" ! Are you feeling alright? - you have acknowledged that England exists!!! This is a step forward for you! "australians we dont rate england series as highly" - this is very funny!! ha ha ha. Are you indian!!! ha ha ha. If you don't take england seriously - why are you posting here!??? i love watching the Ashes!! Especially when england win. The current England team is so good it's going to be winning ashes series a lot in the next few years! Bring it on!!!

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 19:53 GMT)

How can negotiation of TV rights be a major consideration for CA ? I thought the rights in Australia always go to Channel 9

Posted by Winsome on (January 28, 2011, 19:38 GMT)

Wow! How to tart a 'brand' around till it can't even squeak in protest anymore.

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 19:38 GMT)

Steve Elworthy, eh? I guess that it's not bad enough that the English team routinely features a substantial number of imported players... now the ECB are also importing administrators.

(Steve Elworthy is a former RSA cricketer)

Posted by big_al_81 on (January 28, 2011, 18:57 GMT)

Wow. If our correspondent below speaks on behalf of all Aussies (which I seriously doubt) in not rating Ashes series very highly - compared with series featuring 'other elite cricketing nations' - he must enjoy his side getting thrashed more than the average person! If he seriously thinks they're that much better than England the Aussies will struggle to get nil on recent evidence. But I'm not convinced he's totally representative... On the schedules though, the existing ones could do with some improvement anyway but there are some other sensible suggestions from folks on here

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 18:46 GMT)


WE agree Australia are just not good enough to be considered top flight anymore, personally I think the ECB should just award The Aussies a 3 test match series until they improve

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 18:37 GMT)

@ Neutral cricket lovers?

Why do you care? Do you have to watch? DO you need to read? and if you do why do you care so much? Ignore it. X Factor is MASSIVE here. My wife watches it, the kids watch it, everyone at work talks about it, my mates down the pub mention it. I couldn't tell you the name of one contestant. In fact the only name at all I've ever associated with it is Simon Cowell, I don't even know who presents it other than him. THe effort it took to ignore this was precisely ZERO. THe Pope came to Cofton 5 months ago - that's 500 yards from my front door. I forgot he was coming even though I was in a beer garden in Barnt Green 100 yards closer still. TV. Radio. bunting, weeks of newspaper. I ignored it - i even forgot it was happening. So why can't people who don't like an event that has zero impact on them just ignore it? I can't think of anything simpler. It involves doing nothing what-so-ever. I don't understand how

Posted by Harvey on (January 28, 2011, 18:13 GMT)

Overkill. They did it with ODI's and now people can't be bothered with those most of the time. They're doing it with T20 so that domestic T20 matches at some English grounds are now watched by a handful of spectators (and did you see the dismal attendances for the Caribbean T20 BTW?). Why do cricket administrators always have to get greedy and exceed saturation point with everything that's popular?

Posted by tjsimonsen on (January 28, 2011, 17:48 GMT)

Great! The Ashes has been one of the few events in test cricket that has been able to keep Twnety20 at bay (the recent RSA-IND series being another obvious example), and now that's going to end through over exposure as well. Why? because of short term petty cash. I sense a conspiracy to destroy the Jedis - sorry test cricket.

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 17:48 GMT)

Jonesy2 are you in some sort of denial? you've lost 3 out of the last 4 Ashes series ... elite? check the rankings ... and the talent coming through (or being selected as Something Witty points out) suggests this decline is not going to be reversed anytime soon. Matt Hallett was spot on ...

Posted by Lord.emsworth on (January 28, 2011, 17:45 GMT)

Why not play all the year around and finally bore everyone to death? Just when cricket is losing its 'boring' stamp through entertaining 20/20 and ODI's, England and OZ are once more displaying their stubborn perogative tendency to 'own' cricket. Its also unfair to other teams in respect of the ICC rankings. Do well in ten matches and improve your batting or bowling averages and country rankings! In this fast and changing world who the devil has time to watch almost 50 days of continuous (almost) cricket?

Posted by sanjaycrickfan on (January 28, 2011, 17:20 GMT)

I can only laugh at the hypocrisy of English commentators like David Lloyd who said that the World Cup and the IPL are long tournaments while Australia and England play the Ashes series which goes on forever. Other than old Englishmen and Aussies nobody is interested in this boring series.

Posted by shillingsworth on (January 28, 2011, 17:18 GMT)

CA man says ''The Ashes have an x-factor element that excites the Australian public". So he and his ECB chums then do their best to remove any sense of novelty and excitement from the contest.

Posted by aracer on (January 28, 2011, 16:56 GMT)

sparth - you do realise that the next Ashes series (in England) isn't actually happening any sooner? Ponting will still be over 38 by then - I don't rate his chances on the latest evidence.

Posted by uglyhunK on (January 28, 2011, 16:43 GMT)

For neutral cricket lovers, the just concluded ashes was a long boring series. Can't believe they play again n again n again. Gimmeeeeeee a break.

Posted by sparth on (January 28, 2011, 16:07 GMT)

Clearly, this was (partly) Pontings doing. He wants to play in the next ashes that badly that he probably asked the CA to agree to such a ridiculous timetable

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 16:06 GMT)

Why do they need to move it up by 1 year? Move it in by 1 or 2 months and it is fine, which means instead of playing the Ashes in December-January, they play it in October-November, or move it down to after the World Cup. Removing those unwanted one day games from the Ashes tour would also help. Apparently, the BCCI is not the only bully, greedy board.

Posted by jonesy2 on (January 28, 2011, 16:02 GMT)

this is so stupid. the ashes are not the biggest event for australians we dont rate england series as highly as series against south africa and india, the two other elite cricketing nations.

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 15:49 GMT)

I am not impressed.. this is a sort of thing we need to be very careful.. what would be the point of the 2013 Ashes series in England as just after a few months it will be up for grabs again.. not Cricket JUST NOT ASHES!!

I like Tom Lawson's suggestion "how it should be: England - 2013 Australia - 2015/2016 England - 2017 Australia - 2019/2020 and so on"

Posted by pb10677 on (January 28, 2011, 15:46 GMT)

I've been worried about this for a while - it's madness. Big danger of devaluing the Ashes brand, as well as player burnout. It would have been much wiser to push the originally scheduled 2014/15 series in Australia BACK a year rather than bring it forward. That way, when the next English based version comes around in 2017, the gap between the series is optimised. At present, the gaps are: 14 months between Eng and Aus series, 30 months between Aus and Eng series. Under my suggestion, they would be 26 months and 18 months respectively - which is much more even.

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 15:31 GMT)

how it should be:

England - 2013 Australia - 2015/2016 England - 2017 Australia - 2019/2020

and so on..........

no clashes with football tournaments or cricket world cups.....easy

and ALWAYS have the ODIs before the Test Series

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 15:22 GMT)

That's rubbish..totally. CA and ECB gone out of their mind. No wonder we are loosing prime fast bowlers so quickly. Well..time will come when all these fast bowlers will be bowling at 115 K's per hour and bowling machines will come handy :)

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (January 28, 2011, 15:14 GMT)

One thing the ACB and ECB need to remember is that the more they play against each other the Ashes series become nothing more than 'ashes' and become an ordinary and boring affair between two countries living in forgone glory. It's an iconic series and should be played every 4 years like an ICC major event. 15 tests over a 2 year period is a over the moon and this clearly displays the FAT egos of England and Australia over that small urn. The whole series is a ridiculous affair in the first place and as a Canadian I fail to understand its significance. I can only view it as an ordinary bilateral between England and Australia. A lot of these contests is not good for the neutral cricket monger and hopefully the ICC will 'fix' the FTP for the next few years. India needs to play Pakistan a little more, SA needs to play against Sri Lanka, WI needs to play against England etc. Too many 'Ashes' series is not good for the game.

Posted by WPDDESILVA on (January 28, 2011, 15:12 GMT)

This is Ridiculous!! Why is Aus & Eng get to play 5 tests and 7 match ODI's?? Test matches should be divided equally for all test playing nations. It's not about the cricket, it's about the revenue nowadays. New Zealand, Sri Lanka, West Indies don't play more than 3 tests ever...sometime Sri Lanka only gets 2 tests and how often SL tours Australia?? Yes quite rare! And then you aussies blame SL that thier away record is bad?? well give them matches to play. It's quite incredible that SL holds a lot of tests and one day records from playing such low amount of cricket/ Well done to them. Shame on you Cricket Australia and ECB. Do you only look at your revenue column??

Posted by YorkshirePudding on (January 28, 2011, 15:04 GMT)

Bad decision, the 5 months in aus is a poor excuse, most of the core players wil have been there from Nov-Feb anyway whats that 4 months? In the end its all about money and thats all the boards think about now. the final point is that back to back series dont give the teams chance to rebuild if theres a loss, not to mention its probably the most emotionally charged and draining series that the two teams play, look at how the Aussies looked after Sydney this year, or england after the 2006/7 series.

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 14:59 GMT)

The Ashes is the ultimate for any any Englishman or Aussie but I feel this is overkill, two series in half a year might devalue the whole thing. Even in this current tour both teams have big injury lists and with back to back series the injuries will be on a an even bigger scale. Surely the amount of one dayers has to be cut to 5 maximum to try and negate burn out?

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 14:53 GMT)

I guess its all money and they didn't want to wait aslong for the ashes to be in AUS. If would make more sense to knock it backs year though

Posted by HundredPercentBarcelonista on (January 28, 2011, 14:42 GMT)

I remember India staying in Australia from November to March in 1991-92. 5 tests & 10 ODIs followed by the World Cup. So why are the England cricketers so special? While we're at it, should we see this as the ECB bullying CA? I bet that argument would've been made had it been the BCCI instead of the ECB.

Posted by Nipun on (January 28, 2011, 14:35 GMT)

@Matt Hallett :- Spot on mate.If only these cricket authorities had any semblance of common sense (sigh)

Posted by nlambda on (January 28, 2011, 14:35 GMT)

This is poor planning. Don't like this and agree with poster Matt Hallett. 10 test matches is overkill and I suspect players and public will be bored and exhausted by the 7th or 8th.

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 14:32 GMT)

Matt Hallett, certainly makes sense the current situation with an Ashes series in 2016, 2020, 2024 etc. means that it'll be competing with the European football championships and the Olympic games for attendance (they may not directly overlap but how many fans can afford to attend en mass more than 1 of those events in a single summer?)

Posted by nzcricket174 on (January 28, 2011, 14:29 GMT)

This is all apart of Andrew Hilditch's master plan. We are mere pawns to him.

Posted by mikaelnorm on (January 28, 2011, 14:26 GMT)

I'm an England supporter but 10 consecutive Tests against the same opposition, no matter who that opposition might be, will get pretty boring. This happened a few years ago when England played 6 in a row against the West Indies (7 if you include the North Sound sandpit debacle) - by the time it got to Chester-le-Street I was praying for an end.

Posted by Robster1 on (January 28, 2011, 14:22 GMT)

'Tis all, sadly nowadays, about finance raising opportunities. And then add on the extra one day series between these two countries and it will seem as though England and Australis continually play each other, so slowly but surely killing interest.

Shame on both boards.

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 14:22 GMT)

Matt, when in the last few years has Cricket Australia done anything that makes any sense whatsoever??

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 14:21 GMT)

Totally agree with Matt Hallett. No point playing 10 tests back-to-back. It would have been a better choice to play them in Australia in 2015-16 instead of moving them forward to 2013-14. Cricket Australia seems to have gone out of its mind. First selection issues and now FTP. lol..

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 14:19 GMT)

Highly stupid decision. For Eng & Aus cricket is only about Ashes, even bigger than a world cup. Why for every two years, they can have back-to-back ashes in the same year and every year.

Posted by landl47 on (January 28, 2011, 14:17 GMT)

While there are good reasons for it, I'm sorry to see the usual cycle disrupted. Having back-to-back series won't give the winners any time to enjoy their success or the losers any time to rebuild. Australia will barely have got back home in 2013 before England are arriving. One hope: I'd much rather see the ODIs and T20s played before the test series, as they were in 2005. This ODI series has been a real anti-climax, with half-strength sides competing with one eye on the World Cup. Having the shorter format games before the tests would heighten anticipation for the test series and make the ODIs meaningful again, with a chance for squad members to play their way onto the test team. However, there is one plus about the new dates: maybe Ricky Ponting will decide not to retire until after the 2013/2014 series. That'll be 5 Ashes series that he's lost!

Posted by AJ_Tiger86 on (January 28, 2011, 14:16 GMT)

This will result in Ashes overdose, and consequently lack of hype and interest around the series. Especially the second series which will be in Australia will suffer because of this.

Posted by Something_Witty on (January 28, 2011, 14:11 GMT)

Very interesting... hopefully by these series our boys will be playing smart cricket again and we'll see a more even contest. Tons of young talent coming up in Australia, should be fascinating to see the young guys play. (If they get picked by our daft selectors that is!) Plenty of extremely good 17 - 23 year olds around, ought to make for some great contests over the next few series, given that England is finally a genuinely good test-playing side again.

Posted by   on (January 28, 2011, 14:01 GMT)

Ridiculous. Why move it forward instead of moving it back? With the current system, there's 1.5 years from Eng to Aus, then 2.5 years from Aus to Eng. Therefore it makes sense to move it back a year, then you have 2.5 years between the two series followed by 1.5.

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Andrew Miller Andrew Miller was saved from a life of drudgery in the City when his car caught fire on the way to an interview. He took this as a sign and fled to Pakistan where he witnessed England's historic victory in the twilight at Karachi (or thought he did, at any rate - it was too dark to tell). He then joined Wisden Online in 2001, and soon graduated from put-upon photocopier to a writer with a penchant for comment and cricket on the subcontinent. In addition to Pakistan, he has covered England tours in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, as well as the World Cup in the Caribbean in 2007
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