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Last Updated : Jul 26, 2019 02:36 PM IST | Source: Moneycontrol.com

A look at the top 10 individual performances immortalised at The Ashes

From Don Bradman’s herculean 974 runs from seven innings to Jim Laker’s unparalleled match-figures of 19/90, here’s a look at some of the most incredible individual performances at the Ashes.

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Mitchell Johnson (2013-14) | Johnson tormented the English batsmen who travelled Down Under with his searing pace and great mix of yorkers and bouncers. He ended the series with 37 wickets at 13.07, the third best bowling average in Ashes history and ninth in terms of wickets taken in a single series. Johnson’s fiery performances led Australia to a 5-0 series victory and even Cook who scored 766 on his last trip to Australia could finish with just 3 half centuries. (Image: Reuters)
1/10

Mitchell Johnson (2013-14) | Johnson tormented the English batsmen who travelled Down Under with his searing pace and great mix of yorkers and bouncers. He ended the series with 37 wickets at 13.07, the third best bowling average in Ashes history and ninth in terms of wickets taken in a single series. Johnson’s fiery performances led Australia to a 5-0 series whitewash and even Cook who scored 766 on his last trip to Australia could finish with just 3 half centuries. (Image: Reuters)

Alastair Cook (2010-11) | Before the Ashes could kick-off there were calls to replace Cook who wasn’t enjoying the best form. Vice-captain Cook answered his critics by registering 235* in the 2nd innings helping England rescue a draw in the 1st Test. He would carry forward that form to hit two more centuries as England won their first Ashes series ‘Down Under’ in 26 years. Cook finished with 766 averaging 127.66 becoming only the third player to average over 100 in an Ashes series. His run tally was the second-highest by an Englishman during a single Ashes series. During the series, Cook also became the second youngest player to reach 5,000 test runs, behind only the legendary Sachin Tendulkar. (Image: Reuters)
2/10

Alastair Cook (2010-11) | Before the Ashes could kick-off there were calls to replace Cook who wasn’t enjoying the best form. Vice-captain Cook answered his critics by registering 235* in the 2nd innings helping England rescue a draw in the 1st Test. He rode that form hitting two more centuries as England won their first Ashes series ‘Down Under’ in 26 years. Cook finished with 766 averaging 127.66 becoming only the third player to average over 100 in an Ashes series. His run tally was the second-highest by an Englishman during a single Ashes series. During the series, Cook also became the second youngest player to reach 5,000 test runs, behind only the legendary Sachin Tendulkar. (Image: Reuters)

Maurice Tate (1924-25) | Legend has it that after putting down a sitter during the 1902 Ashes, in what was his only Test appearance, Fred Tate who was blamed for England’s 3-run defeat said, “I’ve got a little boy who’ll make this up for me.” Fast forward to 1925, the “little boy” ensured he fulfilled his father’s prediction taking 38 Aussie wickets at just 23.18. What’s remarkable about the younger Tate is that he switched from an off-break bowler to seam at the age of 27. In fact, during the 1924-25 Ashes ‘Down Under’, Tate’s captain Arthur Gilligan said he should’ve had around 58 wickets but for dropped catches and turned down appeals. (Image: Wikimedia commons)
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Maurice Tate (1924-25) | Legend has it that after putting down a sitter during the 1902 Ashes, in what was his only Test appearance, Fred Tate who was blamed for England’s 3-run defeat said, “I’ve got a little boy who’ll make this up for me.” Fast forward to 1925, the “little boy” ensured he fulfilled his father’s prediction taking 38 Aussie wickets at just 23.18. What’s remarkable about the younger Tate is that he switched from an off-break bowler to seam at the age of 27. In fact, during the 1924-25 Ashes ‘Down Under’, Tate’s captain Arthur Gilligan said he should’ve had around 58 wickets but for dropped catches and turned down appeals. (Image: Wikimedia commons)

Mark Taylor (1989 Ashes) | Taylor arrived in England for the 1989 series having only played two Tests averaging 16.75. England would’ve marked him out as a weak link to target in an otherwise dominant Aussie line-up. However, playing in his first full Test series, Taylor quickly went about his business scoring 136 in his Ashes debut at Headingley. He ensured he ended the tour on a high with 219 in the fifth Test at Trent Bridge as Australia won the series 4-0. Taylor finished with a century, a double century and five half century scoring a total of 839 runs, which is the second highest tally by an Australian in a single Ashes series, second only to the legendary Don Bradman’s 974. (Image: Reuters)
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Mark Taylor (1989 Ashes) | Taylor arrived in England for the 1989 series having only played two Tests averaging 16.75. England would’ve marked him out as a weak link to target in an otherwise dominant Aussie line-up. However, playing in his first full Test series, Taylor quickly went about his business scoring 136 in his Ashes debut at Headingley. He ensured he ended the tour on a high with 219 in the fifth Test at Trent Bridge as Australia won the series 4-0. Taylor finished with a century, a double century and five half centuries amassing a total of 839 runs, which is the second highest tally by an Australian in a single Ashes series, second only to the legendary Don Bradman’s 974. (Image: Reuters)

Jim Laker (1956) | Laker missed out on a perfect haul by just 1 wicket when he took 19 wickets during the 4th Test of the 1956 Ashes. The off-spinner became the first bowler to take 10 wickets in an innings finishing with match figures of 19 for 90 at Old Trafford. Anil Kumble is the only other bowler who has been able to emulate Laker’s feat of taking 10 wickets in an innings. Laker also set the record for most-wickets in an Ashes series in 1956 finishing with 46 at an average of just 9.60. His performance at Old Trafford helped England win the series 2-1. (Image: ICC)
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Jim Laker (1956) | Laker missed out on a perfect haul by just 1 wicket when he took 19 wickets during the 4th Test of the 1956 Ashes. The off-spinner became the first bowler to take 10 wickets in an innings finishing with match figures of 19 for 90 at Old Trafford. Anil Kumble is the only other bowler who has been able to emulate Laker’s feat of taking 10 wickets in an innings. Laker also set the record for most-wickets in an Ashes series that same year finishing with 46 at an average of just 9.60. His performance at Old Trafford helped England win the series 2-1. (Image: ICC)

Terry Alderman (1981) | In the summer of 1981, Alderman made a stunning Ashes debut taking 9 wickets at Trent Bridge as Australia won the 1st Test by 4 wickets. While Botham would later stamp his authority on this series guiding England to a stunning comeback victory, Alderman continued his lethal form. Australia ended on the losing side after carrying a 1-0 lead into the 3rd Test but Alderman shone finishing with 42 wickets at just 21.26. His tally is still the second-best in a single Ashes series, just 4 wickets behind the legendary Jim Laker and is still the most in a single series by a debutant Test cricketer. (Image: ICC)
6/10

Terry Alderman (1981) | In the summer of 1981, Alderman made a stunning Ashes debut taking 9 wickets at Trent Bridge as Australia won the 1st Test by 4 wickets. While Botham would later stamp his authority on this series guiding England to a stunning comeback victory, Alderman continued his lethal form. Australia ended on the losing side despite carrying a 1-0 lead into the 3rd Test but Alderman shone finishing with 42 wickets at just 21.26. His tally is still the second-best in a single Ashes series, just 4 wickets behind the legendary Jim Laker and is still the most in a single series by a debutant Test cricketer. (Image: ICC)

Ian Botham (1981) | In 1981, England had lost the 1st Test by 4 wickets and captain Ian Botham registered a pair of ducks in the 2nd Test which ended in a draw. Botham then relinquished captaincy ending his 12-match reign without a single victory. The 3rd Test saw Botham bludgeon 149-not out helping England register what had seemed like an improbable victory to level the series. He then registered figures of 5/11 in the 2nd innings of the 4th Test to take a 2-1 lead. The 5th Test at Manchester saw Botham hammer 118 off just 102 balls in the 2nd innings on the way to a 103-run victory. Botham wasn’t done yet completing a stunning comeback by taking 10 wickets in the final Test which ended in a draw. England won the series 3-1 with Botham named Man of the Match in all 3 victories. In fact the 1981 series later came to be known as Botham’s Ashes. (Image: Reuters)
7/10

Ian Botham (1981) | In 1981, England had lost the 1st Test by 4 wickets and captain Botham registered a pair of ducks in the 2nd Test which ended in a draw. Botham then relinquished captaincy ending his 12-match reign without a single victory. The 3rd Test saw Botham bludgeon 149-not out helping England seal an improbable victory to level the series. He then registered figures of 5/11 in the 2nd innings of the 4th Test to take a 2-1 lead. The 5th Test at Manchester saw Botham hammer 118 off just 102 balls in the 2nd innings en route to a 103-run victory. Botham wasn’t done yet completing a stunning comeback by taking 10 wickets in the final Test which ended in a draw. England won the series 3-1 with Botham named Man of the Match in all 3 victories. In fact the 1981 series later came to be known as Botham’s Ashes. (Image: Reuters)

Don Bradman (1930) | In 1930, a 21-year-old Bradman scored 974 runs in 5 Test matches at an astronomical average of 139.14. Arguably the greatest ever batsman that the game has seen, Bradman amassed those runs in just 7 innings, despite scores of 8,1 and 14 in 3 outings. The other 4 innings saw him score 131, 254, 334 and 232. Bradman’s tally of 974 runs remain the highest on the list of runs scored in a single Ashes series. He also occupies 4th and 6th spot on that list with 810 runs in 1936-37 and 758 in 1934. (Image: ICC)
8/10

Don Bradman (1930) | In 1930, a 21-year-old Bradman scored 974 runs in 5 Test matches at an astronomical average of 139.14. Arguably the greatest ever batsman that the game has seen, Bradman amassed those runs in just 7 innings, despite scores of 8,1 and 14 in 3 outings. The other 4 innings saw him score 131, 254, 334 and 232. Bradman’s tally of 974 runs remain the highest on the list of runs scored in a single Ashes series. He also occupies 4th and 6th spot on that list with 810 runs in 1936-37 and 758 in 1934. (Image: ICC)

Shane Warne (2005) | The 2005 Ashes will be remembered for ‘that ball’ which Warne sent down to Andrew Strauss which pitched way outside off before turning in sharply to hit the middle stump. England recovered from losing the first Test in that series to win the Ashes 2-1 mainly thanks to some scintillating cricket from Andrew Flintoff. Warne however ended that series with 40 wickets at 19.92 taking 5th position on the list of most wickets taken in a single series. (Image: Reuters)
9/10

Shane Warne (2005) | The 2005 Ashes will be remembered for ‘that ball’ which Warne sent down to Andrew Strauss which pitched way outside off before turning in sharply to hit the middle stump. England recovered from losing the first Test in that series to win the Ashes 2-1 mainly thanks to some scintillating cricket from Andrew Flintoff. Warne however ended that series with 40 wickets at 19.92 taking 5th position on the list of most wickets taken in a single series. (Image: Reuters)

Andrew Flintoff (2005) | In 2005, Australia travelled to England having won the last eight Ashes series on the trot. In fact, England’s last win in the series was almost two decades back in 1986-87. One man who was key to England’s victory was Freddie Flintoff who despite being an all-rounder and batting way down the order finished as the third highest run-scorer with 402 runs at an average of 40.2. Flintoff also finished as the highest wicket-taker for England with 24 scalps, second only to Warne’s stunning 40 wickets in that series. Flintoff was named Player of the Series thanks to his brilliant all-round effort as England won 2-1 in what has been termed as the most thrilling series ever. (Image: Reuters)
10/10

Andrew Flintoff (2005) | In 2005, Australia travelled to England having won the last eight Ashes series on the trot. In fact, England’s last win in the series was almost two decades back in 1986-87. One man who was key to England’s victory was Freddie Flintoff who despite being an all-rounder and batting way down the order finished as the third highest run-scorer with 402 runs at an average of 40.2. Flintoff also finished as the highest wicket-taker for England with 24 scalps, second only to Warne’s 40 wickets in that series. Flintoff was named Player of the Series thanks to his brilliant all-round effort as England won 2-1 in what has been termed as the most thrilling series ever. (Image: Reuters)

First Published on Jul 25, 2019 07:53 am
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