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Match reports

Australia v England 1882-83

The eleven selected to represent the full strength of the Colonies included nine members of the team which visited the old country in the summer of 1882 under the command of Murdoch, and was completed with the addition of Midwinter and Evans

The eleven selected to represent the full strength of the Colonies included nine members of the team which visited the old country in the summer of 1882 under the command of Murdoch, and was completed with the addition of Midwinter and Evans. The interest exhibited in the contest was intense, and one authority states that 55,000 persons attended during the four days the match occupied. The opening day was dull and threatening, but no rain fell until nearly five o'clock, when a shower caused an adjournment for about ten minutes, the light for some considerable time before and after being bad. No more rain fell during play on either day, but on Monday night some heavy showers were experienced, and the ground was not in such good condition when the game was continued on the Tuesday. The concluding day was fine, but strong wind blew down the wickets. The game was not concluded until ten minutes to six on the fourth day, and the game was so splendidly contested that up until four o'clock or later neither side could claim advantage.
Each eleven contained a lame man. Giffen had an injured leg, but with Murdoch to run for him, contrived to play two good and useful innings, and was allowed a substitute in the field. Morley's injured side however, seriously handicapped the visitors, as he was practically useless as a bowler after sending down a few overs, and of little service in the field. Mistakes in the field were many in number, and had chances been accepted, Steel would have been 0 instead of 135 not out, and Bannerman 7 in place of 63. Bonnor was credited with three lives in his first innings before he had made 17. But notwithstanding these errors, the fielding on both sides was often brilliant, and nothing in that department of the game was finer than the display of G. B. Studd. A Colonial newspaper speaks of him as, "that remarkable fieldsmen;" one critic remarks, "the fielding of G. B. Studd was a splendid exhibition." While another observes, "G. B. Studd's pace and accuracy were marvellous." Of the batsmen none deserve warmer praise than Blackham, who played a faultless first innings of 57 when runs were badly wanted, and to whose good and resolute batting on the fourth day the Colonists owed their fourth wickets' victory. Each innings was played on a fresh wicket.
For the third time in succession in eleven a-side matches fortune favoured Hon. Ivo Bligh in the toss, and C. T. Studd and Barlow began the batting. The latter was caught at point at 13, and Leslie, who succeeded, fell to a catch in the slips, with the total at 37. Steel filled the vacancy, and before he had scored played one from Boyle which dropped within an inch of Murdoch's hands. At the luncheon interval the score stood at 48, Studd, not out 21, and Steel, not out 2. On resumption of play Steel gave a chance to the wicket-keeper before he had added to his score, and the two batsmen then made a long stand. Seventy-three runs were put on at a rapid rate, and then Studd after starting for a run was unable to get back before Midwinter threw down the wicket. His 48 is described as, "a finished exhibition of cricket without the shadow of a chance being given." On Read joining Steel the latter was badly missed by Bonnor in the slips, and the score was then taken to 150 before the Surrey amateur was caught. Tylecote was clean bowled at 156, and with an addition of only three runs Barnes met with the same fate. Bates came in, and with 170 up had a narrow escape of, being run out. With 180 on the board rain caused a short adjournment at 4.45. On resuming 19 runs were added and then Bates was out to a splendid running catch by Bonnor at long-on, and seven wickets were down for 199. The English captain took Bates' place, and Steel then scored a single and brought 200 up, and his individual score to 100. A chance of a run out followed, but the ball was returned to the wrong wicket and Steel escaped. By fast scoring the total reached 236 when Bligh was clean bowled for 19. G. B. Studd came in and runs were put on at a great pace till a very fine piece of fielding by Bannerman resulted in Studd being run out. At this point play ceased for the day, the score being 263 for nine wickets, Steel, not out, 135.
When the game was continued on the Monday the first innings of the visitors was brought to a conclusion wihtout any addition to the overnight score, the fourth ball of the first over proving fatal to Morley. Steel was loudly cheered for his very fine innings, which included sixteen 4's. He gave four chances while scoring his first 45, but his last 90 runs were made in his best form and without a mistake. His 135 not out was the highest score he contributed during his visit to the Antipodes, and throughout his stay at the wickets his batting was of the most vigorous description. Bonnor and Bannerman went in at 12.55 to commence the first innings of Australia, and when only three runs had been made the former gave chance to Steel at long-on which was not accepted. At 31 Bannerman was caught in the slips, and on Murdoch coming in Bonnor was again missed by Steel. At 34 Murdoch was clean bowled, and his successor, Horan, caught with the total at 39. Giffen came next, and as his leg was injured on the opening day, he had Murdoch to run for him. When Bonnor had made 24, he had a third life at the hands of Steel, and shortly after luncheon was taken, the score at 58. On resumption of play Bonnor had a narrow escape at point, and then the score was rapidly hit up to 100, when Giffen was finely cuaght for an excellent innings of 27, made under diffculties, and devoid of blemish. Midwinter was clean bowled at 128, and Blackham filled the vacancy. Before 150 went up Bonnor gave another chance to Steel - a difficult one - and at 157 the players adjourned for refreshments. On resuming only three runs were added before Bonnor was caught for an exceedingly lucky innings of 87, and Palmer, who succeeded him, was easily taken at point. Seven wickets were then down for 164, and a follow-on seemed not improbable, but on Evans joining Blackham a resolute stand was made. Runs were put on at a rapid rate, Blackham doing most of the scoring, and it was not until 220 had been totalled that he was clean-bowled for one of the best and most dashing innings he has played. With one run added to the score Spofforth was caught in the slips, and Boyle, the last man came in, 42 runs being wanted to bring the sides on even terms. When 27 of this number had been hit off stumps were drawn for the day, each batsman having obtained 20, and the total standing at 248 for 9 wickets.
When the game was continued at 12.05 on the third day Boyle added nine and Evans two, and the former was then caught at mid-off. The second innings of the Englishmen was commenced at 12.45, C. T. Studd and Barlow, as before, being the first at the wickets. With the total at 43, towards which number Studd had contributed 24 and Barlow 15, luncheon was taken. Play was resumed at 2.15, and with 54 on the board Studd was caught at short-leg for a finely-played 31. When Leslie, who filled the vacancy, had scored a single Barlow was caught in the slips for a patient innings of 20. Steel took Barlow's place, and at 77 Horan clean bowled Leslie with his first ball. Read, who succeeded him, scored 7 and then played on, and Tylecote, who followed, was clean bowled without scoring, the fourth wicket falling at 99 and the fifth at 100. Bates having joined Steel, 12 runs were added and then the latter was clean bowled for a good and carefully compiled 21. Bligh helped Bates put on 26 runs and was then caught at point for 10, and seven wickets were down for 137. Barnes followed and a capital stand was made, 41 runs being added to the score before the Notts professional was caught and bowled for 20. G. B. Studd scored 9 quickly and was then caught at point at 192, and Morley, the last man, after making a couple was caught at the wicket, and the visitors' second innings closed for 197. The innings being concluded within a few minutes of six o'clock, play ceased for the day.
On Wednesday, the fourth day of the match, the Colonists went in a second time, wanting 199 runs to win. Bannerman and Murdoch began, and the former was missed at the wicket when he had made seven. Murdoch exhibited extreme care, and 113 balls were bowled before he scored a run. At the adjourment for luncheon no wicket had fallen, Bannerman having scored 22, and Murdoch 13, the total being 39. On resuming, five runs were added and then Murdoch was caught in the slips from a lofty hit. Bonnor took his place, but was caught at 51, and without any addition to the total Horan, his successor, was caught and bowled. With Murdoch to run for him, Giffen filled the vacancy, and a long stand was then made without a chance being given. At 107 a parting was at last effected Bannerman being caught at point for a splendid innings of 63, made at a much more rapid rate than usual with hime. Blackham came in and batted in the same resolute way as in the first innings, the English bowling being fairly mastered. With 120 on the board refreshments were taken. When 147 had been compiled Giffen gave a difficult chance to Steel which was not accepted, but in stepping out to the same bowler was smartly stumped for a capital innings of 32, the score then standing at 162 for five wickets. With two runs added Evans hit a ball over the bowlers head and was caught, and when Midwinter joined Blackham the requisite runs were hit off, and the Australians won the great match of the tour by four wickets.