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Australia national cricket team

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Australia national cricket team logo

Australia national cricket team logo
Test status granted 1877
First Test match v England England at Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne, 15–19 March 1877
Captain Ricky Ponting
Coach Tim Nielsen
Official ICC Test, ODI and T20I ranking 4th (Test), 3rd (ODI)
Test matches
– This year
Last Test match v England at Lords, London, England,
16–20 July 2009
– This year

As of 3 March 2009

The Australian cricket team is the national cricket team of Australia. It is the joint oldest team in Test cricket, having played in the first Test match in 1877 (defeating England by 45 runs).

As of 1 February 2009, the Australian team has played 704 Test matches, winning 46.66%, losing 25.95% and drawing 27.09% of its games. It has a winning record against every other Test nation. The Australian national cricket team has also led the ICC Test Championship table for the majority of the time since the creation of the ICC Test table system in January 2001. The South African cricket team did lead this table for a brief period from January to May 2003, before Australia resumed the first position on the table. Australia has since dropped down to fourth in the Test rankings.

They are also, in one-day cricket, the winners of the last three Cricket World Cups. Australia has won the Cricket World Cup 4 times in total; 1987, 1999, 2003 & 2007. As of 28 April 2007 they are undefeated in 29 consecutive World Cup matches. They have led the ICC One-Day International Championship table from its inception through to 18 February 2007, and then again from 7 April 2007 until 30 January 2009. In 2002, they were named World Team of the Year at the Laureus World Sports Awards in recognition of their world record sequence of test match victories.


1878 team

The history of the Australian cricket team is rich and diverse. Together with the English cricket team, it participated in the first Test match in 1877. A highlight of Australia's early history was the 1882 Test match against England at The Oval. In this match Fred Spofforth took 7/44 in the game's fourth innings to save the match by preventing England from making their 85-run target. After this match The Sporting Times, a major newspaper in London at the time, printed a mock obituary in which the death of English cricket was proclaimed and the announcement made that "the body was cremated and the ashes taken to Australia." This was the start of the famous Ashes series in which every two years Australia and England play a number of Test matches to decide the holder of the Ashes. To this day, the contest is one of the fiercest rivalries in sport.

In the first half-century or so, these contests were on the whole friendly but competitive with both sides enjoying the visit to another country, and getting to play against quality cricketers. The famous Bodyline series temporarily changed things. The series was marred by the tactics used by the English captain Douglas Jardine to control the batting of Don Bradman who completely destroyed the English bowling attack in the 1930 series. Jardine used his fast bowlers to bowl 6 bouncers an over at head height over leg stump with 6 or 7 fielders around the leg stump in a close catching position. Given the fact that there were no helmets around at the time the tactics were widely condemned by nearly all of Australia including many former Test cricketers and important politicians.

Australia continued its success up until the 1980s, built mainly around the likes of Richie Benaud, the Chappell brothers, Dennis Lillee, and Rod Marsh. The 1980s was a period of relative mediocrity after the retirements of several key players, and it was not until the captaincy of Allan Border that the team was restructured. The 1990s and modern era are arguably Australia's most successful period, unbeaten in all Ashes series played bar the famous 2005 series and achieving a hat-trick of World Cups. This extraordinary success has been attributed to the restructuring of the team and system by Border, successive shrewd captains, and the brilliance of several key players, most notably Glenn McGrath, Shane Warne, Steve Waugh, Matthew Hayden and Ricky Ponting.

vs India

Australian captain Steve Waugh referred to India as the "Final Frontier", as that was the only place where Australia hadn't won a series in over thirty years. Australia lost in the 2001 series 2–1 and when India came to Australia for Waugh's farewell series in 2003–04, they drew the series 1–1 and came close to winning it after scoring a national record 705 but not enforcing the follow-on.

However, later in the year, the side (captained by Adam Gilchrist) won in India for the first time in 35 years. The Australians won this series 2–1 (with one match rained out on the last day).

Pakistani Tour 2004–05

The 2004–05 summer season in Australia was against the touring Pakistani cricket team which Australia won convincingly, several matches ending on the 4th day (of 5). The first Test of 2005 ended with: AUS 568 and 1/62 v PAK 304 and 325; Ponting made 207 in the first innings, laying to rest a minor media issue of him not making a Test 100 in his first season as captain.

2005 Ashes

The 2005 Ashes tour to England became a watershed event in Australian cricket when, for the first time since 1986–87 a Test series was lost to the old enemy England, and The Ashes were thus surrendered. The summer started with four defeats in one week in one day matches (to England in a Twenty20 match, Somerset in a warm up match, and then Bangladesh and England in successive One Day Internationals). Australia and England tied the final match of the first one day international series, before Australia won the second series 2–1.

The first Test match at Lord's was a convincing victory for Australia, with Glenn McGrath impressing in particular. Captain Ricky Ponting afterwards famously said: We’ve a very good chance of winning 5–0. However at the second Test at Edgbaston star bowler Glenn McGrath was ruled out by an ankle injury after stepping on a ball in the practice nets; Ponting put England in to bat on a fair batting wicket (England scored 407 runs on the first day) and England eventually won a pulsating match by two runs and so leveled the series. England dominated the rain-affected third Test at Old Trafford, but a fine rearguard innings by Ponting just saved Australia on the final day and the match was drawn. In the fourth Test at Trent Bridge Australia was again outplayed and forced to follow-on for the first time in 191 Test matches and eighteen years. England struggled in their second innings but eventually got the 129 runs they needed to win, losing seven wickets in the process. Australia needed to win the fifth and final Test at The Oval to level the series and retain the Ashes but were hampered by bad weather, a strong England bowling performance on the fourth day and England's excellent batting (led by Kevin Pietersen and tailender Ashley Giles) on the final day before the match ended in a draw, handing England a 2–1 series win.

Ageing stars such as Hayden, Gilchrist, Martyn, Gillespie and Kasprowicz underperformed in the tour with Gillespie being subsequently dropped for new and younger talent. On the other hand Shane Warne, who took 40 wickets and scored 249 runs, gave an all-round good performance. Members of the old guard (Ponting, Langer, Lee and McGrath) also played well.

ICC Super Series

The ICC (International Cricket Council) sanctioned a test and three-match one-day series for 2005. This series was to be played between the top ranking test and one-day international nations (according to rankings as at April 2005) and an internationally selected Rest of the World XI. Australia was the top ranked nation in both forms of the game as at April 2005.

Australia had an opportunity to begin the rebuilding process following the Ashes series loss at the Super Test held against a Rest of the World team in Sydney in October. Although the match was of poor quality with the World team underperforming, it was a good opportunity for some of the Australian team to get back on track. Many did, especially Hayden who scored 111 and 87 and Gilchrist who scored 94 in the first innings and made seven dismissals. Stuart MacGill (who had not played in the 2005 Ashes) took nine wickets. Overall, the Australian Cricket Team clean swept the World XI Team 3–0 in the One Day International Series, and also won the six-day Test Match.

vs West Indies

In November Australia continued to perform well winning a three match Test series with the West Indies comfortably. Stars were Hayden (who was clearly intent on proving that rumors of his cricketing death were premature – he scored 445 runs at an average of 89) and Hussey who had an auspicious debut season. Gilchrist, however, was out of touch with the bat as he had been in England throughout the month.

South Africa Tour

In the 2006 cricket tour to South Africa, Australia lost the one-day series 3–2 after a record-breaking final ODI. Setting South Africa a world record target of 434 off 50 overs (the previous record being 398/5 scored by Sri Lanka vs Kenya 10 years previously), South Africa managed to beat Australia by 1 wicket with a new record score of 438. Earlier, Ricky Ponting top-scored with 164 off 105 balls. South Africa's Herschelle Gibbs, likewise batting at number 3, went on to score 175 off 111 balls thereby playing an instrumental role in the run chase. Many other records were broken in the same match. A total of 872 runs were scored (The previous record was 693 when India beat Pakistan by five runs in Karachi in March 2004). Mick Lewis had the ignominy of becoming the most expensive bowler in ODI history with figures of 0/113 in his 10 overs.

In the test series that followed however, Australia won convincingly with Brett Lee and Stuart Clark (Man of the Series) playing particularly well.

Bangladesh Tour

Following the South African series, Australia toured Bangladesh for a two-test series. Despite expectations of a one-sided contest, the first test proved a very close affair with Bangladesh (historically the weakest test-playing nation) scoring more than 400 first-innings runs and bowling Australia out for 269 in the first innings on a very good batting wicket and ultimately setting Australia a challenging 307 for victory. Ponting's men were able to win this match by three wickets. However, in the second match Australia dominated throughout, winning by an innings and 80 runs. In Australia's only innings, Jason Gillespie became the first nightwatchman to score a double century with 201 not out.

2006–07 Ashes

Warne (right) bowling to Ian Bell at Brisbane Cricket Ground in 2006

After winning the ICC Champions Trophy convincingly, Australia went home for their summer to play England in a five-test series.

The second test took place in Adelaide from 1 December. The third match of the series was held at the WACA Ground in the West Australian city of Perth. Following the Third test victory, Australia reclaimed the Ashes, already having achieved a winning margin of 3–0 in the best of five series. England lamented the shortest period of Ashes retention in the history of the tournament, dating back to 1882. In the days following the historic win in Perth, spin bowler Shane Warne announced that he will retire from international cricket at the conclusion of the fifth and final Sydney test in January 2007. This also prompted Justin Langer, Australian opening batsmen at the time, to announce his retirement from Test cricket after the 5th test as well. Fast bowler Glenn McGrath later announced he too would retire from international cricket after the 2007 Cricket World Cup.

The fourth match of the series was played at the MCG. Australia took victory in just three days, only needing one innings of batting to outscore England. The fifth match in Sydney ended with Australia capturing a 10 wicket victory. The Australians completed a 5–0 whitewash of the Ashes series, the first time either side had achieved such a feat since the 1920–21 series.

2006–07 ODI season

Following the Ashes victory over England, Australia began the 2007 Commonwealth Bank Tri-series against England and New Zealand with a series of largely comfortable victories, leading to their coach John Buchanan complaining that the lack of opposition was undermining Australia's World Cup bid. However, injuries to key players contributed to Australia losing two matches in the qualification games and the final 2–0 to an also injury hit England. With Ponting rested for the series against New Zealand, Australia under Michael Hussey lost the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy 3–0, their first One Day series loss in New Zealand for 33 years. The loss also cost them the overall number one ranking for the first time since the rankings began.

2007 World Cup

Australia dominated the 2007 Cricket World Cup, remaining unbeaten through the tournament. They dominated with the bat and ball. Remarkably they lost just 42 wickets in 11 matches, while claiming 104 out of 110 of their opponents. The best batsman for the tournament was Matthew Hayden, getting three centuries and 659 runs at an average of 73. Australia's keeper Adam Gilchrist starred in the World cup Final, scoring 149 in a convincing and controversial Australian win. Bowler Glenn McGrath was named Man of the Series for his magnificent contribution with the ball.

2007–08 Season

2008 Season

2008–09 Season


This is a list of every player to have played for Australia in the last year, and the forms of the game in which they have played. Matthew Hayden has played for Australia in this period, but has since retired from international cricket.

Each year, Cricket Australia's National Selection Panel (NSP) names a list of 25 players for the coming year, from which selectors choose Test, One-Day and Twenty20 International teams. Uncontracted players remain eligible for selection and can be upgraded to a Cricket Australia contract if they gain regular selection. Contracted players are paid a base retainer (A$180,000 in 2009–10), which is adjusted according to a player ranking system decided by the NSP as well as match fees, tour fees and prize money for on-field success.

The 2009–10 list was announced on 15 April 2008. Of the players contracted only Brad Hodge has not played for Australia in the last year. Andrew Symonds had his contract rescinded in June 2009 after breaking its conditions. Shaun Tait was awarded the vacant contract spot.

Name Age Batting Style Bowling Style State Forms ODI shirt
Captain and Middle-Order Batsman
Ricky Ponting 38 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium Tasmania Test, ODI 14
Vice-Captain and Middle-Order Batsman
Michael Clarke 31 Right-Handed Bat Slow Left-Arm Orthodox New South Wales Test, ODI, Twenty20 23
Opening Batsmen
Phillip Hughes 24 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off Break New South Wales Test
Simon Katich 37 Left-Handed Bat Slow Left-Arm Chinaman New South Wales Test 13
Shaun Marsh 29 Left-Handed Bat Slow Left-Arm Orthodox Western Australia ODI, Twenty20 9
David Warner1 26 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Leg-Break New South Wales ODI, Twenty20 31
Shane Watson 31 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium New South Wales Test, ODI, Twenty20 33
Middle-Order Batsmen
Callum Ferguson 28 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium South Australia ODI, Twenty20 12
David Hussey 35 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off-Break Victoria ODI, Twenty20 29
Michael Hussey 37 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium Western Australia Test, ODI, Twenty20 48
Marcus North 33 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off-Break Western Australia Test, ODI, Twenty20 26
Adam Voges1 33 Right-Handed Bat Slow Left-Arm Chinaman Western Australia Twenty20 24
Brad Haddin 35 Right-Handed Bat New South Wales Test, ODI, Twenty20 57
Graham Manou 33 Right-Handed Bat South Australia Test
Luke Ronchi1 31 Right-Handed Bat Western Australia Twenty20 34
All rounders
Ryan Harris1 33 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium Queensland ODI 41
Moises Henriques1 26 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium-Fast New South Wales Twenty20 21
James Hopes 34 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium Queensland ODI, Twenty20 39
Andrew McDonald 31 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium Victoria Test
Andrew Symonds2 37 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium
Right-Arm Off-Break
Queensland Test, ODI, Twenty20 63
Cameron White 29 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Leg Spin Victoria Test, ODI, Twenty20 7
Pace Bowlers
Doug Bollinger 31 Left-Handed Bat Left-Arm Fast New South Wales Test, ODI 4
Nathan Bracken 35 Right-Handed Bat Left-Arm Fast-Medium New South Wales ODI, Twenty20 59
Stuart Clark 37 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium New South Wales Test, ODI 8
Brett Geeves1 30 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium Tasmania ODI, Twenty20 19
Shane Harwood1 39 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium Victoria ODI, Twenty20 37
Ben Hilfenhaus 29 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium Tasmania Test, ODI, Twenty20 20
Mitchell Johnson 31 Left-Handed Bat Left-Arm Fast-Medium Western Australia Test, ODI, Twenty20 25
Ben Laughlin1 30 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium Queensland ODI, Twenty20 55
Brett Lee 36 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast New South Wales Test, ODI, Twenty20 58
Peter Siddle 28 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium Victoria Test, ODI, Twenty20 10
Shaun Tait 30 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast South Australia ODI, Twenty20 32
Spin Bowlers
Nathan Hauritz 31 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off-Break New South Wales Test, ODI, Twenty20 43
Jason Krejza1 30 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off-Break Tasmania Test
  • 1Player does not hold a Cricket Australia contract.
  • 2Player had contract rescinded.

Significant dates

  • November 1868: 1868 Aboriginal cricket tour of England
  • 15 March 1877: Test debut
  • 1882: First Ashes Series held.
  • 28 December 1934: Women's Test team debut
  • 5 January 1971: ODI Debut
  • 23 June 1973: Women's ODI team debut
  • 8 November 1987: Australia claims its first Cricket World Cup after defeating England by 7 runs in Calcutta, India.
  • 5 January 2007: Australia completes first 5–0 "whitewash" of the Ashes in 86 years.
  • 16 February 2007: Australia suffer their first ever 10 wickets defeat in an ODI against New Zealand at Wellington.
  • 18 February 2007: Australia loses world #1 ODI ranking for the first time.
  • 27 February 2007: Australia becomes the first team in ODIs to score 6 consecutive 300+ scores.
  • 28 April 2007: Australia wins World Cup for record 4th time and becomes the first team in history to win it 3 times in a row. Australia defeated Pakistan in 1999 World Cup Final, India in 2003 World Cup Final and Sri Lanka in 2007 Final.

Test match records


  • Australia have been involved in the only 2 tied matches in Test history. The First occurred against the West Indies at Brisbane in December 1960. The Second occurred against India at Madras in September 1986.
  • Australia are the most successful Test team in cricketing history. They have won more than 330 Test matches at a rate of 47%. The next best performance is by South Africa at 35%.
  • Australia's lowest total in a Test match innings was recorded at Birmingham against England in May 1902. Australia were bowled all out for 36.
  • Australia's largest victory in a Test match came on the 24th of February, 2002. Australia defeated South Africa by an innings and 360 runs in Johannesburg.
  • Australia holds the record for most consecutive wins with 16. This has been achieved twice; from October 1999 to February 2001, and from December 2005 to January 2008
  • Australia shares the record for most consecutive series victories winning 9 series from October 2005 to June 2008. This record is shared with England.
  • Australia's highest total in a Test match innings was recorded at Kingston, Jamaica against the West Indies in June 1955. Australia posted 758/8 in their first innings with five players scoring a century.
  • Australia have won the ICC Test Championship seven times since it started – 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004 , 2005, 2006, 2007.


  • Steve Waugh has appeared in the most Tests for Australia, playing in 168 tests. Waugh also holds the record for the most One Day International appearances for Australia, playing 325 matches.


  • Charles Bannerman faced the first ball in test cricket, scored the first runs in test cricket and scored the first test century and half-century.
  • Charles Bannerman also scored 67.34% of the Australian first innings total in match 1. This record remains to this day as the highest percentage of an innings total that has been scored by a single batsman.
  • Ricky Ponting has scored the most runs for Australia in Test match cricket with 11,193 runs in 226 innings. Allan Border in second with 11,174 runs in 265 innings while Steve Waugh has 10,927 in 260 innings.
  • Matthew Hayden holds the record of the highest individual score in a Test match by an Australian. Hayden struck 380 against Zimbabwe on the 9th and 10th of October 2003. This overtook a record previously shared by Donald Bradman and Mark Taylor who both recorded 334 in an individual innings. He also hit an Australian ODI record of 181 off 166 balls, which included ten sixes in the final match of the Chappell–Hadlee Trophy on 20 February 2007.
  • Donald Bradman holds the record for the highest average by an Australian (or any other) cricketer with a remarkable average of 99.94. Bradman played 52 tests and struck 29 centuries and 13 fifties in them.
  • Ricky Ponting holds the record for the most centuries by an Australian cricketer with 35 in 199 innings. Former Australian captain Steve Waugh is in second position with 32 centuries from 260 innings.
  • Allan Border holds the record for the most fifties by an Australian cricketer with 63 in 265 innings.
  • Glenn McGrath holds the record for the most ducks by an Australian cricketer with 35 in 138 innings.


  • Billy Midwinter picked up the first five-wicket haul in a test innings in match 1.
  • Fred Spofforth performed Test cricket's first hat-trick by dismissing Vernon Royle, Francis McKinnon and Tom Emmett in successive balls.
  • Fred Spofforth also took the first 10-wicket match haul in Test cricket.
  • Shane Warne holds the record for the most wickets by an Australian cricketer with 708 wickets in 145 test matches.
  • Arthur Mailey holds the record for the best bowling figures in an innings by an Australian cricketer with 9/121 against England in February 1921.
  • Bob Massie holds the record for the best bowling figures in a match by an Australian cricketer with 16/137 against England in June 1972.
  • JJ Ferris holds the record for the best bowling average by an Australian bowler, taking 61 wickets at 12.70 in his career.
  • Clarrie Grimmett holds the record for the most wickets in a test series with 44 against South Africa in 1935–36.

Fielding and wicketkeeping

  • Jack Blackham performed the first stumping in Test cricket in match 1.
  • Mark Waugh holds the record for the most catches in a career by an Australian fielder with 181 in 128 matches.
  • Adam Gilchrist holds the record for the most dismissals in a career by an Australian wicketkeeper with 399 in 97 matches

One Day International records


  • Australia's highest total in a One Day International innings is 434/4 scored off 50 overs against South Africa at Johannesburg on the 12th of March 2006. This was a world record before the South Africans surpassed this score in the second innings.
  • Australia's lowest total in a One Day International innings is 70. This score has occurred twice. Once against New Zealand in 1986, and once against England in 1977.
  • Australia's largest victory in a One Day International is 256 runs. This occurred against Namibia at the 2003 World Cup in South Africa.
  • Australia have won the ICC ODI Championship five times since it started – 2002,2003,2004,2005,2006.

Under the Southern Cross I Stand

The team song is "Under the Southern Cross I Stand," which is sung by the players after every victory and "treated with reverential consideration and respect" within the team. The official lyrics are as follows, though when it is sung by the players, the word "little" in the last line is replaced by " bloody" or an expletive.

Under the Southern Cross I Stand
A sprig of wattle in my hand,
A native of my native land,
Australia you little beauty.

The authorship of this "Under the Southern Cross I Stand" is credited to former wicketkeeper Rod Marsh, who was apparently inspired by Henry Lawson's 1887 poem, "Flag of the Southern Cross". Marsh initially had the role of leading the team in singing it, and on his retirement he passed it on to Allan Border. The other players to have taken on the role are David Boon (when Border took over the captaincy), Ian Healy (on Boon's retirement), Ricky Ponting (on Healy's retirement), Justin Langer (when Ponting took over the captaincy). The role currently belongs to Michael Hussey, who took it on when Langer retired in January 2007.

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