In 1920-21, a weaker England side returned to international cricket with a trip. The powerful Australian squad, captained by Armstrong and bolstered by a bowling assault led by Gregory and Ted McDonald, won the series 5-0, the first time this had happened in an Ashes series. It was also the first time that an Australian team had accomplished such a feat.
The first Test match was played at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), and began on December 26, 1877. Australia was declared winners by an innings margin due to bad weather preventing an English victory. This is the only series ever to be tied 1-1. The second Test was held at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) from January 2 to 6, 1878. Again, Australia won by an innings margin to take a lead of 1-0 in the series.
After this successful tour, Armstrong returned home to play for New South Wales in an interstate game against Victoria. He scored 105 runs and took three wickets in this match which Australia lost by an innings and 130 runs. This is the highest score batting at number three position in an interstate game.
Two years later, in 1880-81, another British expeditionary force arrived in Australia. This time they came to play Australia in the annual cricket series known as the "Test matches". The Australians won the series 3-1.
In 1994-95, England's cricket team traveled Australia to participate in the Ashes series against their hosts. The series included of five Test matches, three of which Australia won, one by England, and one by a draw. Australia won the Ashes for the third time in a row. This was also the first time since 1882 that England had lost the series 3-1.
England won the First Test match at Brisbane by an innings and 36 runs. They then went on to win the next four matches by an aggregate score of 1-0. That is the first time England has won a five-match series against Australia.
The highlight of this series was undoubtedly Andrew Flintoff's career best performance in an international match. He scored 130 in the Third Test match at Adelaide. This is the highest individual score batting at number three position in Test history.
Flintoff died in October 2016 due to injuries suffered while playing football. This tragedy brought down the curtain on his magnificent career.
England won the Fifth Test match at Sydney by an innings and 135 runs. This is the biggest winning margin in a Test match overseas. It also equaled the record set by Australia in 1877-78. This makes England winner of the series 4-1.
Australia failed to defend their title successfully. They were beaten by India in the 1996-97 series played across two countries.
Australia won the Ashes for the first time in 1891-92, defeating England 2-1. The 1932–33 trip was dubbed the "Bodyline series" because, in reaction to the great Australian batsman Don Bradman, England devised a strategy of bowling rapidly towards the batsmen's bodies, with the majority of the fielders deployed in a close ring on the leg side. This so upset the natural batting order that Australia was able to defeat England 3-0.
The Fifth Test was called off after the first two days because of rain. England won the series 4-1.
Australia again defeated England 2-1 in 1933. However, this time they were beaten 3-0. The 1936–37 series ended in a draw 1-1.
Australia regained the Ashes in 1951 by winning the Fifth Test match by an innings and 63 runs. This is the only time that has happened to date. It was also the last time that England would lose the Ashes.
Australia retained the Ashes in 1952 by winning the Fifth Test match by an innings and 85 runs. It was also the last time that England would lose the Ashes twice in a row.
England regained the Ashes in 2005 by winning the Fifth Test match by an innings and 184 runs. It was also the first time since 1938 that England had won back-to-back matches against Australia.
In the 1882/83 season, the inaugural Ashes test series was played. England won the first eight Ashes series before Australia took the urn for the first time in 1891/92. The 2019 Ashes champions
In reality, Australia has surpassed England in terms of Ashes test and series victories. England has won 106 Ashes tests, 28 fewer than Australia, and 32 series wins, one fewer than Australia.
Even if England wins the final Test to even the series at 2-2, Australia will retain the urn due to their prior series victory. With a victory, Paine's men will become the first Australian team to win an Ashes series in England since 2001. In our live blog, you can see how the action unfolded.
With the victory, Australia achieved a 5-0 "whitewash," the first time this had occurred in an Ashes series since 1920-21. The series was particularly notable for the retirement of four key Australian players: Justin Langer, Damien Martyn, Glenn McGrath, and Shane Warne. Ricky Ponting was selected the Series Player of the Year.
Ponting was unable to play due to injury, so Michael Clarke was chosen as his replacement. The decision proved to be a good one, as Clarke led the side well during his short term as captain. He scored centuries in both games of the series and finished with 373 runs at an average of 100. His career average before this point was 57.
The decision to replace Ponting with Clarke came after the former missed several opportunities to win matches. This included dropping himself down the order from number three to number six on several occasions during the 2005/06 season. However, he recovered quickly from these setbacks and went on to score centuries in each of Australia's next two tests.
After winning the series 5-0, many people called for Warne to be given the job as coach, but he declined the offer. Instead, he suggested Steve Waugh as a possible replacement for himself. When Waugh died in November 2007, it left the position vacant. However, David Boon decided to retire instead, allowing Ponting to return as captain for the second test against England later that month.