The term ‘Test’ is thought to have originated from the perception that matches between Australia and England’s representative teams were a “test of cricketing strength and competence.” The sun shone brightly in the afternoon as the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground  prepared for one of the most historic moments in cricket historyEngland travelled to Australia in 1877 to compete in the first international test match of cricket. The game was held at the Melbourne  Cricket Ground. On March 15, 1877,a large crowd gathered at the Melbourne Cricket Ground to  watch Australia bat at 1.05pm.

The first ball of the match was bowled by England’s Alfred Shaw to Charles Bannerman shortly after 1 p.m. On March 15, 1877, it was  warm and sunny at Melbourne Cricket Ground when Charles Bannerman took guard  and prepared to play the first ball from Alfred Shaw  in what is widely regarded as the first test match of cricket. The first session, which began shortly after one o’clock, was brief: lunch was  served  at two o’clock.

Charles Bannerman’s name is not inscribed in history solely because he scored the first run: he also made 165 runs. Both teams were far  from full strength. W. G. Grace was already absent, and despite being the home team, Australia faced significant difficulties in their  selection. Evans, Allen, and Spofforth (three bowlers who had caused problems for the England players) all declined to play, with the latter citing the absence of Murdoch as the reason for his decision.

Charles Bannerman’s performance was truly outstanding. He scored 165 runs before retiring injured after being hit on the hand; the next highest score by an Australian was 18 by Garrett, the No. 9 batter. Australia reached a total score of 245 runs thanks to Bannerman’s heroic effort; a collection was taken to commemorate Bannerman’s feat, and it raised one pound per run.  When England batted, Harry Jupp opened with a 63, Charlwood with a 36, and Hill, who came in at No. 9, with an unbeaten 35. England were all out for 196 runs, but  they responded quickly.

Alfred Shaw and George Ulyett, who had bowled relatively quietly in the first innings, bowled superbly, and the Australian innings was  soon in disarray, from which it was never able to recover completely. Alfred Shaw and George Ulyett had both taken the first nine wickets before James Lillywhite bowled the final man in.

Australia was all out for 104 runs; England needed 154 runs to win the test match and were favourites to get them, but they were annihilated by the bowling of Tom Kendall, who had only taken one wicket in the first innings; this time he took seven wickets, for an aggregate of eight for 109. The first four England batsmen scored only 79 runs, while the remaining seven batsmen contributed only 24 runs.

After four days of cricket, Australia had beaten Team England in the first-ever International Test match by 45 runs. The second Test also took place at The Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). England won that match by four wickets to draw the series 1–1.


Featured image credit: Getty images

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