Australian cricket team in England in 1902

Australian cricket team in England in 1902

Infobox cricket series
series=Australian cricket team in England in 1902
partof=1902 English cricket season
date=5 May, 190217 September 1902
place=United Kingdom
result=Australia won the 5-Test series 2-1
captain1=Joe Darling
captain2=Archie MacLaren
runs1=C Hill (258)
VT Trumper (247)

runs2=FS Jackson (311)
JT Tyldesley (245)
AC MacLaren (198)
wickets1=H Trumble (26)
JV Saunders (18)
MA Noble (14)
wickets2=W Rhodes (22)
WH Lockwood (17)

The Australian cricket team toured England during the 1902 English cricket season. The five-Test series between the two countries has been fondly remembered; in 1967 the cricket writer A.A. Thomson described the series as "a rubber more exciting than any in history except the Australia v West Indies series in 1960–61" [ My favourite summer] , by A.A. Thomson, from Cricinfo (taken from Wisden Cricketers' Almanack, 1967 edition), retrieved 26 June 2006. Australia had won the previous three Test rubbers between the two countries, and won their fourth successive Test series, by two matches to one with two draws. In the process they "beat the records of all their predecessors in the country" by losing only two of 39 matches during the tour, their defeats being against England in the Fifth Test and in the first of their two fixtures against Yorkshire. [ [ The Australians in England 1902] , John Wisden & Co., "Wisden Cricketers' Almanack 1903] The remaining 37 matches gave 23 wins for Australia and 14 draws.

Following the tour, three of the Australians — Victor Trumper, Warwick Armstrong and James Kelly — were named Wisden Cricketers of the Year in 1903, with their captain Joe Darling already having been bestowed that honour in 1900. The Australians' leading batsman, Victor Trumper, made more first class runs than anyone in the season, and of batsman with more than 1,000 runs only Arthur Shrewsbury scored his at a higher average. [ [ First-class Batting and Fielding in England for 1902 (Ordered by Average)] , CricketArchive, retrieved 25 December 2006] His 2,570 runs was a new record for any Australian in England. Harry Altham wrote: "From start to finish of the season, on every sort of wicket, against every sort of bowling, Trumper entranced the eye, inspired his side, demoralized his enemies, and made run-getting appear the easiest thing in the world." [Quoted in "The Cricket Captains of England", Alan Gibson, 1989, The Pavilion Library, ISBN 1-85145-390-3, p76.]

Australian touring party

The second Test match was restricted to 105 minutes of play, rain and poor pitch conditions accounting for the rest. Australia were suffering from the same ill health that had weakened the team before and during their match in Cambridge; Trumble and Howell had influenza, while Darling, Noble and Saunders all felt ill, though did take part in the game. Saunders thus replaced Howell in the playing eleven. England went in with the same eleven that had played in Birmingham, with Tom Taylor as twelfth man.

England lost two wickets in the first four overs, without any batsman having added to the total; rain then kept interrupting the partnership between Jackson and MacLaren, but the two added 102, giving a few chances that were not taken by Australian fieldsmen. The match was abandoned at quarter past eleven on the third morning, with the ground almost under water. [All quotes about the second Test taken from [ the Wisden Cricketer's Almanack report] .]

The tourists' health problems and the bad weather which they had been experiencing, combined with their poor recent performances in the First Test and against Yorkshire, meant that this match could be seen as marking the low point of their fortunes. The remainder of the tour would prove far more successful.

16–18 June: England XI v Australians

"Australians (154 & 185) beat England XI (138 & 70) by 131 runs" [ [ England XI v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 26 December 2006]

The England XI which took the field at The Saffrons in Eastbourne was captained by Gilbert Jessop and included two more players with Test experience, Bobby Abel and Bill Storer. Neither had featured in the first two Tests of the series, however. Darling won the toss and chose to bat, though play was delayed until after lunch on the first day, and the Australians made 154, with Hill scoring 46 and Trumper 31. England XI then fell to 29 for five, Abel having made 26 of the runs, while Trumble took three wickets. He added a further five to that on the second day, bowling unchanged throughout the England XI's innings, and the eighth-wicket partnership between Jessop and Vivian Crawford was worth almost two-thirds of England XI's total. Trumble eventually had both men caught, and Gregory made 71 as the Australians set a target of 200, while the hosts George Thompson took eight for 88 in the second innings. Trumble then added six to his haul of wickets, as the England XI were bowled out for 70, with both Jessop and Crawford falling in single digits.

19–21 June: Derbyshire v Australians

"Australians (218 & 13/2) beat Derbyshire (152 & 78) by eight wickets" [ [ Derbyshire v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 26 December 2006]

Derbyshire captain Albert Lawton made 50 from number six at Derby, including a 73-run fifth-wicket stand, and after that the last five pairs added 18 as Derbyshire were bowled out for 152. Hopkins, who opened the batting after going wicketless, made 68 and a stand of 113 with Darling, and the tourists were leading by four with six wickets in hand at close on the first day. No play was possible on the second day, but on the third the Australians added a further 52, before Saunders and Trumble bowled Derbyshire out for 78. After losing the first two wickets for two runs, Carter and Duff made it to the target of 13 for no further loss.

23–24 June: Yorkshire v Australians

"Australians (106 & 87) beat Yorkshire (77 & 72) by 44 runs" [ [ Yorkshire v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 26 December 2006]

The Australians travelled to Park Avenue Cricket Ground in Bradford seeking to gain revenge for the defeat three weeks earlier, which they did, in a match where the average partnership was worth 8.55 runs – the lowest thus far on tour, beating 8.88 in the previous Yorkshire v Australians clash. The Australians batted first, and Hill and Darling put on 74 for the third wicket, before Rhodes and Schofield Haigh bowled them out for 106. In reply, Saunders and Trumble took all ten wickets after bowling unchanged through 29.2 overs, Trumble getting six for 17 while Saunders took four for 58, with wicket-keeper David Hunter top-scoring with 14 from number eleven.

The Australians led by 29, and despite a Haigh five-for, Gregory made an unbeaten 42 which lasted into the second day, setting a target of 117. John Brown and John Tunnicliffe put on 14 for the first wicket, but Trumble and Saunders then took four wickets for one run, and though Irving Washington made the highest score in the match for Yorkshire with 22, Trumble ended with six for 27 as the Australians triumphed by 44 runs.

26–28 June: England XI v Australians

"Australians (402 & 42/3) beat England XI (240 & 203, f/o) by seven wickets" [ [ England XI v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 26 December 2006]

This match was hastily arranged; the coronation of Edward VII was planned for 26 June, but the King developed appendicitis and the Australians decided to remain at Bradford to play an England XI. It included one former Test player, Willie Quaife. The Australians won the toss, batted first, and made a total higher than the entire previous match had produced. Trumper made 113 before he was bowled by Jack Knutton of Coventry, who had played one first class match eight years before, and now returned to take nine for 100. Knutton, who usually played in the Bradford Leagues, bowled at quick pace but his action was sometimes regarded as suspect. [ [ Wisden - 1994 - Supplementary Obituaries] , retrieved 26 December 2006] In his second over, he bowled Noble, Hill and Darling, but Trumper and Duff put on 193 for the fifth wicket, before Trumper fell five short of the ground's fifth-wicket record. [ [ Park Avenue Cricket Ground, Bradford - Highest Partnership for Each Wicket in first-class cricket] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 26 December 2006] Duff went on to make 182 before he, too, was bowled by Knutton. The England XI were bowled out for 240 and 203, with Quaife making 68 in the first and captain Reginald Crawford making 90 in the second, and Knutton had Darling out a second time before the Australians chased down the total with seven wickets to spare.

30 June–1 July: Scotland v Australians

"Australians (305) beat Scotland (109 & 91) by an innings and 105 runs" [ [ Scotland v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 26 December 2006]

This match at The Grange was not considered first class. Scotland made 109 in the first innings, and the Australians responded with 283 for six at the close of the first day's play, with Duff having made 98. Hopkins was on 42 not out overnight; he did not add to that, but the Australians still added 22, all coming from Jones at No. 10 and Saunders at No. 11. Needing 195 to make the Australians bat again, Scotland were bowled out for 91, with the Australians using six bowlers.

Third Test, 3–5 July: England v Australia

Remarkably, this match turned out to be as exciting as the previous one had been. It has become known as "Jessop's match", for his 104 in only 77 minutes in England's second innings turned the game. When he came to the wicket, England were 48/5, and scoring the 263 that they needed to win seemed far beyond them. Saunders had taken four of the wickets. Jessop's previous highest Test score was only 55, but now he reached his hundred off just 76 balls, after an uncertain start when he gave two chances with his score in the twenties. He and Jackson added 109, before Jackson was out for 49 to make the score 157/6. Hirst helped him take the score to 187 before Jessop himself was out. "Wisden" said of his innings: "All things considered a more astonishing display has never been seen. What he did would have been scarcely possible under the same circumstances to any other living batsmen."

With 76 still needed and only three wickets remaining, the odds seemed once more to have shifted against England. Lockwood scored only two, but he helped Hirst add another 27 before being dismissed: 214/8. Lilley helped Hirst to add a further 34 before he was Trumble's fourth victim of the innings and twelfth of the match: 248/9. (Darling had entrusted almost all the bowling to Saunders and Trumble; they sent down all but nine overs of the 66.5 that the innings lasted.) So Rhodes joined Hirst with 15 still needed. Legend has it that Hirst said to Rhodes, "We'll get them in singles, Wilfred." However Rhodes denied the story, Hirst said he could not recall what his words had been, and not every run was a single. But get the runs they did, Hirst finishing with 58 not out. He had top-scored with 43 in just 45 minutes in the first innings, as well as taking 5 wickets in Australia's first innings, so this was his match almost as much as it was Jessop's.

Returning to the beginning of the match, England crucially, as it proved, recalled Jessop and Hirst, omitting Ranji and Tate. Tom Hayward came in for his first match of the series, replacing Abel. Australia were once more unchanged. When Australia batted first, the pitch - though wet - played easily. England did well to reduce them to 175/7, but Hopkins, Trumble and Kelly ensured that the eighth and ninth wickets contributed another 149.

Rain in the night made the pitch difficult, and England were 94/6 at lunch, Trumble having taken five of the wickets. The wicket improved after lunch, and Braund and Hirst added 54 for the seventh wicket. England still needed 38 to avoid the likelihood of being asked to follow on, with the sun coming out and the wicket likely soon to deteriorate once more, but Lockwood helped Hirst add a further 42. Crucially, Hill missed Lockwood in the deep not long after he had come in. Though the ninth and tenth wickets fell quickly, England had reduced their first innings deficit to 141. Trumble, having top scored for Australia, had followed up by taking 8/65.

At the end of the second day, Australia had reached 114/8, never recovering from the early loss of Trumper to a run out, and the last two wickets fell quickly the next morning. Lockwood finished with 5/45. So England were left 263 to win, and the stage was set for Jessop's heroics. [All quotes about the fifth Test taken from [ the Wisden Cricketer's Almanack report] unless otherwise indicated.]

14-16 August: Marylebone Cricket Club v Australians

"Australians (427) beat Marylebone Cricket Club (212 & 181) by an innings and 34 runs" [ [ Marylebone Cricket Club v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

MCC won the toss at Lord's and batted first. They struggled, with Ranjitsinhji top scoring with 60 and Howell taking 6/105. The Australians were 80/2 at the end of the day's play. Next day, Hill took his score to 136, made in 240 minutes, with support from Noble (70) and Gregory (86). At the end of day two, MCC were 23-1. Next day, only H.A. Carpenter (66) and E. Smith (48) resisted for long. Armstrong took 6/44.

18-20 August: Gloucestershire v Australians

"Australians (312) beat Gloucestershire (152 & 150) by an innings and 10 runs" [ [ Gloucestershire v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

In spite of the loss of almost all of the first day to rain at the College Ground, Cheltenham, where the Australians batted first and reached 21/1, they had another comfortable victory. On the second day, Trumper made up for lost time by scoring 125 in only 120 minutes. Jessop took 7/91. By close of play, the county were 147/9, having collapsed from 103/3 at one stage. The last wicket soon fell the next morning, Armstrong finishing with 4/35 and Hopkins 4/11. Following on, the running out of Jessop for 43 probably sealed their fate, though W. Troup managed 45* and enabled a partial recovery from 69/6. Armstrong and Hopkins bowled unchanged, taking 4/74 and 5/65 respectively.

21-23 August: Kent v Australians

"Australians (154 & 209) beat Kent (77 & 197) by 89 runs" [ [ Kent v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

The tourists won the toss and batted first at the St Lawrence Ground, Canterbury. By the end of the day's play, 21 wickets had fallen, with the Australians 8/1 in their second innings. Noble top scored with 43 in their first innings, before being run out. Colin Blythe took 4/50 and Alec Hearne 3/39. If the Australians had found batting difficult, Kent found it even more so as Trumble, bowling unchanged, returned an analysis of 8/30, at the time the best of his career. James Seymour, batting at number 4, did well to survive, finishing on 26*. Conditions appeared a little easier for batting next day. Trumper made 69 before he was run out. Kent were set 287 to win. At one point they were 138/4, but then they fell away. Saunders took the last five wickets, to finish with figures of 5/43. Trumble had 3/92.

25-27 August: Middlesex v Australians

"Australians (232 & 176/4) beat Middlesex (205 & 203) by 6 wickets" [ [ Middlesex v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

When Middlesex won the toss and batted at Lord's, for the second match in succession Trumble took eight wickets in an innings, this time 8/101 bowling unchanged. PF Warner made 58. The tourists were 3/1 at the end of the first day. Next day, they could only establish a first innings lead of 28, their top scorer being Trumper with 69. At close of play, Middlesex had reached 122/5 in their second innings. When their innings was complated the following day, GW Beldam had made 75 and Trumble taken 4/48, giving him a total of 23 wickets in two consecutive matches. It had been a low-scoring matches, but the Australians had no difficulty in reaching their target, Noble (59*) and Armstrong (47) adding 95 for the fourth wicket. Trumper passed 2000 runs in first-class matches for the season when he reached 24 in the first innings. Trumble reached 100 wickets in first-class matches for the season when taking his 8th wicket in the first innings.

28-30 August: Lancashire v Australians

"Australians (138 & 105) beat Lancashire (120 & 105) by 18 runs" [ [ Lancashire v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

In a low-scoring match at the Liverpool Cricket Club Ground at Aigburth, the tourists almost suffered their third defeat. George Littlewood and Alexander Kermode shared 36 of the 38 overs in the Australian first innings, taking 5/49 and 5/68 respectively. At the end of the first day, Lancashire were 61/2, only 77 behind, but next morning they lost two wickets without adding to their score and only added another 44, Saunders finishing with 6/52. In their second innings, the Australians were 91/4, but then lost their last 6 wickets while only 14 runs were added. Littlewood took 7/49 for match figures of 12/98. At the close of the second day, the county were 77/5, needing only a further 47 to win. They added another 16 before the sixth wicket fell, but only managed 12 more before being all out. Trumble took 5/44 and Saunders 4/37. Littlewood's figures in each innings were his best in first-class cricket at the time, as were Kermode's in the first innings.

1-3 September: Players v Australians

"The Players (184 & 128) lost to Australians (359) by an innings and 47 runs" [ [ Players v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

Winning the toss and batting at Harrogate, the Players were indebted to their captain Willie Quaife, who top-scored with 58. At one point 165/5, they then collapsed. Saunders finished with 4/44 and Hopkins had 3/21. By close of play, the Australians had reached 59/0 in reply. Next day, Trumper went on to 127 made in only 105 minutes and, with Darling and Hopkins each passing fifty, the tourists established a big lead. By the end of day two the Players had reached 30/2, and they were all out for another 98 on the final day, Saunders finishing with figures of 5/44.

4-6 September: CI Thornton's XI v Australians

"CI Thornton's XI (198 & 202/9d) drew with Australians (247 & 120/4)" [ [ CI Thornton's XI v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

CI Thornton had put together a strong side which included six Yorkshiremen. They won the toss at the North Marine Road ground at Scarborough and batted. They slumped to 79/6 but their captain, Stanley Jackson, scored 72 and led a partial recovery. Trumble took 5/62 and Saunders 5/74. The Australians were 31/2 at the day's end. Next day, Trumper made 62 and Hopkins 49*, but the tourists led by only 49 on first innings. Wilfred Rhodes took 4/95 and George Thompson 3/32. By close of play the home side were 87/6 in their second innings, but next day Johnny Tyldesley, who had been 55* overnight, went on to make 88. An unbroken last wicket stand of 52 by Haigh and Rhodes enabled Thornton's XI to declare. Saunders finished with 5/95. When Trumper (55) was the fourth wicket to fall, the visitors gave up the chase for the 154 that they needed to win and accepted the draw, having batted for 24.5 overs.

8-10 September: South v Australians

"Australians (249 & 248) drew with the South (403/7d & 87/5)" [ [ South v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

At Hastings the Australians very nearly suffered what would have been their third defeat, with the South, captained by WG Grace, being only eight runs short of victory when time ran out. The tourists made a partial recovery from 94/5 thanks to Noble (63) and Hopkins (74), supported by Trumble, but after Hopkins was the seventh man out the end came quickly, Cuthbert Burnup taking three of the last four wickets to return figures of 3/22. Braund took 4/88. The South were 53/0 in reply by the end of the first day. Next day, Burnup and Abel took their first wicket stand to 122, Hayward made 106 in 180 minutes, and most of the other batsmen made useful contributions. Grace declared overnight, with Noble having taken 4/89. Next day the tourists made a good start. But after Duff was the first man out with the score at 102, Trumper stood almost alone, eventually being out for 120. Joe Vine took 7/31. With the pitch seemingly helping the spinners, Trumble and Armstrong shared the 22 overs that were possible in the South's second innings before time ran out. In the context of a run-chase, Armstrong did well to concede only 36 runs from his 11 overs, and took two wickets. Trumble had figures of 3/47.

11-13 September: South v Australians

"Australians (123 & 91) beat the South (87 & 66) by 61 runs" [ [ South v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

There was no play on the scheduled first day of this match at Dean Park Cricket Ground, Bournemouth, but with the highest of the four innings only totalling 123 there was still time for a positive result, the Australians getting revenge for their scare at Hastings against a South side that contained only three of the same players. Noble's 30 in the tourists' first innings was the highest score of the match. Fred Tate and Ted Arnold bowled unchanged in both Australian innings, Arnold taking 8/57 and 4/30 and Tate 2/61 and 6/48. At the close of the scheduled second day the South's first innings stood at 53/6, and when it ended the next morning Trumble had returned new career-best figures of 9/39, beating the 8/30 he had managed only a few weeks earlier. He took a further 6/29 in the second innings, only Fry (26) offering much resistance.

15-17 September: Players v Australians

"The Players (356 & 117/3) drew with Australians (414)" [ [ Players v Australians in 1902] , from CricketArchive, retrieved 22 January 2008]

The tour's final match was at The Oval. A strong Players side won the toss, but had reached only 283/6 by the end of the first day, Hayward making 74, Tyldesley 56 and James Iremonger 66. When the innings was completed next day, Saunders had figures of 4/50. The Australians reached 208/2 in reply, 75 minutes being lost to rain, with Trumper scoring 96 and Hill on 79 not out. Hill was soon out next morning for 81 and there was a minor collapse to 233/5. But nearly 200 runs were added for the last five wickets, with Trumble making 68. Rhodes took 5/115. The tour ended on a note of anticlimax, with the home side playing out time in their second innings.


External sources

* [ CricketArchive – tour summaries]

Annual reviews

* Wisden Cricketers Almanack 1903

Further reading

* Bill Frindall, "The Wisden Book of Test Cricket 1877-1978", Wisden, 1979
* Chris Harte, "A History of Australian Cricket", Andre Deutsch, 1993
* Ray Robinson, "On Top Down Under", Cassell, 1975
* Ralph Barker & Irving Rosenwater, "England v Australia: A compendium of Test cricket between the countries 1877-1968", Batsford, 1969, ISBN 0-7134-0317-9

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