BBC SPORT Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC Sport
 You are in: Cricket: The Ashes  
Sport Front Page
-------------------
Football
Cricket
Statistics
Counties
Scorecards
The Ashes
World Cup
Rugby Union
Rugby League
Tennis
Golf
Motorsport
Boxing
Athletics
Other Sports
-------------------
Special Events
-------------------
Sports Talk
-------------------
BBC Pundits
TV & Radio
Question of Sport
-------------------
Photo Galleries
Funny Old Game
-------------------
Around The UK: 
N Ireland
Scotland
Wales

BBC Sport Academy
BBC News
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS

  Wednesday, 4 December, 2002, 01:47 GMT
Howard: Hand over the Ashes
Australian Prime Minister John Howard
Howard is a self-confessed cricket nut
Australian Prime Minister John Howard says it is time for England to relinquish their grip on the Ashes urn.

"Given our sustained supremacy, it is not unreasonable to argue the urn should be on display in Australia," he told Sydney's Daily Telegraph newspaper.

"I ask our English friends to look at it this way: If the urn were to come to Australia, then they would have a much greater incentive to win it back."

A replica of the Ashes urn
A replica of the Ashes urn
The Ashes are currently housed at the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) at Lord's in London.

They were created 120 years ago after Australia's first Test series win in England, prompting The Sporting Times to publish a mock obituary for English cricket.

The bails from the match were later "cremated" and placed in a tiny urn that became The Ashes.

The Australian Cricket Board (ACB) had hoped to at least borrow the urn for a travelling exhibition during the current England tour.

But a decision was made a fortnight ago not to move the miniscule trophy after scientists concluded there would be a risk of breakage if it were subject to unnecessary movement.

The Australian Cricket Board have a replica of the trophy, presented in 1948 after the 4-0 series victory by Don Bradman's "Invincibles".

But Mr Howard is keen for his country to get their hands on the real thing.

However, the MCC has no intention of allowing the urn to move.

"The Ashes urn is not and never has been a trophy competed for between Australia and England," spokesman Iain Wilton said.

"The trophy is the Waterford crystal trophy which will be presented to Steve Waugh at the end of the series."

England, who have not won a single match since arriving in Australia, saw their chances of regaining the Ashes disappear when they slipped to defeat in the third Test.

But Australia opening batsman Justin Langer said he was unworried by the location of the trophy.

"We are playing for the spirit and the incredible pride associated with the Ashes battle," Langer wrote in his BBC Sport Online column.

"It may not live in Australia but the soul of the Ashes sure as eggs belongs here right now as we cherish the magnitude of an eighth consecutive series victory."


News

Features

Have your say

ASHES STATS
See also:

20 Nov 02 | The Ashes
Links to more The Ashes stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more The Ashes stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

Sport Front Page | Football | Cricket | Rugby Union | Rugby League |
Tennis | Golf | Motorsport | Boxing | Athletics | Other Sports |
Special Events | Sports Talk | BBC Pundits | TV & Radio | Question of Sport |
Photo Galleries | Funny Old Game | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales