Australian cricket is as old as international cricket itself. Australia was the first country to play Test cricket along with England back in 1877 at home in Melbourne. They defeated England in their own game in that first official Test match. They have a Test cricket history of over 140 years, and during this period, they have produced some excellent players including but not limited to the great Sir Donald Bradman.
Since then, Australia has played 830 Tests – second-most behind England – winning 393, losing 224 and drawing 211 Tests. They are the only team featuring in two tied Tests in the history of Test cricket.
At 47%, Australia has the highest winning percentage in Tests. The Ashes rivalry between the England cricket team and Australia is one of the most celebrated rivalries in Test cricket.
ODI cricket too began with a match between Australia and England in Melbourne that Australia won easily by 5 wickets. In the 577 ODIs played so far – the most by an international cricket team – the Aussies have won 577, lost 332 and tied 9 ODI matches while 34 matches ended in no-result.
Overall, they have won 60% ODIs they have been part of which is the highest winning percentage in ODIs. Australia has also been the most successful team in the ODI World Cup. They have won 5 out of 12 World Cups so far – 3 of them in consecutive World Cups in 1999, 2003 and 2007.
In One Day International (ODI) cricket Australia have been phenomenal, especially in the period between the late 20th century and early 21st century. The Australian team during this period is considered the greatest Australian team ever.
In T20 cricket, the shortest format of the game, the Aussies have not been able to dominate as much as Test and ODI cricket. In 128 T20Is, Australia has won just 68 matches, giving them a winning percentage of 53% which is fourth highest among the international cricket teams.
Generally, the home season for Australia cricket team begins in late October or early November every year, and it extends till February or March the next year.
Australia plays a Test series every year in the season of December and has a tradition of hosting the Boxing day Test each year on 26th December at their largest cricket ground in Melbourne Cricket Club. The Test after that begins early next year, generally in Sydney followed by a Test in Brisbane.
Australia away from home
For the remainder of the year, unless there is World event at home, the Aussies travel to India, England for Ashes, South Africa primarily among other countries.
When playing away from home, Australia plays about 3-5 ODIs, 2-5 T20Is and 4 to 5 Test matches. Australia plays 5 Test match series only against England as a part of Ashes. Against India and South Africa, they play 4 Test match series while against the other countries; they play 3 or 2 Test match series depending on the schedule.
England followed by India are their prominent away fixtures that the cricketing world looks forward.
Currently, Australia is hosting India for a 3 ODI, 3 T20I and 4 Test match series. Once the India tour is over in early 2021, they will host New Zealand for 5 T20I series.
After that, they will fly to South Africa for 3 Test series as a part of World Test Championship in February 2021. In March, Australia would travel to New Zealand for 3 T20Is. Then they will fly to West Indies in mid-June for 3 ODIs and 3 T20Is.
In early October, they will host Sri Lanka for a 3 T20I series just before the T20 World Cup in India. After the World Cup, they will host 5 match Ashes series at home towards the end of the year 2021.
For the season 2022-23, Australia with host South Africa for 3 ODIs and 3 T20Is after the end of home Ashes series. Later, they will play Pakistan for 2 Tests, 3 ODIs and 3 T20Is series in away conditions followed by a short 3 ODI series against Afghanistan.
The rest of the schedule involves, playing 7 away Tests against SL, Afghanistan and India and 5 home Tests against West Indies and South Africa. They will also play 8 away ODIs against SL (5) and India (3) and 6 home ODIs against England (3) and South Africa (3). As far as T20Is are concerned, Australia will play 6 matches – 3 in India and 3 at home against England.
Current Australia cricket live matches involve a long home season against India. They are hosting India for 3 ODIs – 2 at Sydney and 1 at Canberra – in late November and early December. Then they will play 3 T20Is in Sydney from 4 December to 8 December.
After the tour match in Sydney against Australia-A, India will play the first Test against Australia at Adelaide starting 17th December. The boxing day Test will be played at Melbourne on 26th December and the next one in Sydney starting 7th January 2021.
The fourth and the last Test will be played at Gabba, Brisbane starting 15th January 2021. Australia had lost the last home Test series against India – their first series loss against at home. They will be very keen to turn the tables this time around.
The immediate next series for Australia is against New Zealand away from home. Earlier, the series was supposed to have 3 ODIs at home, but later it was changed to 5 T20Is in NZ. This will help Australia and New Zealand prepare for the T20 World Cup later in 2021. The series will start from 22nd February 2021 and would end in the next month on 7th March
History of Australian greatsThere is a long list of Australia cricket players that have made a mark in the course of their long history in cricket.
The name that always comes at the top is that of Sir Donald Bradman who averages 99.94 in Test cricket. No batsman is close to him in terms of the run-scoring ability in Test cricket.
Then there were other batsmen like Victor Trumper, Stan McCabe, Arthur Morris who played in the first half of the 20th century. Then there were batsmen like Allen Border – with 10 thousand Test runs, Steve Waugh and others who represented Australia in the pre-modern era.
More recently they have produced great batsmen like Ricky Ponting, Adam Gilchrist, Mathew Hayden and the pretty recent ones like Steven Smith and Marnus Labuschagne.
In terms of bowlers, there are some old-timer Australian cricket players like Ray Lindwall, Bill O’Reilly. Then in the second half of the 20th century, we have the greats like Dennis Lillee and Jeff Thomson – who terrorized the batsmen with sheer pace and Ritchie Benaud the leg-spinning all-rounder and an excellent captain.
Then came the era of arguably the greatest spinner of all-time – Shane Warne. He along with Glenn McGrath carried the burden of Australian bowling for more than a decade. In the modern era, we have likes of Mitchell Starc leading the Australia bowling attack.
The current Australian Test team is captained by the wicketkeeper-batsman Tim Paine.
At the top of the order, they have Joe Burns and David Warner opening the innings followed by Marnus Labuschagne at number 3. Then follows the current Test number 1 batsman – Steve Smith. Labuschagne isn’t far behind at the 3rd spot in ICC Test ranking for batsmen.
Then in the middle and lower-middle order, they have captain Tim Paine, Travis Head and Matthew Wade. In the bowling department, they have Mitchell Starc, James Pattinson, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins – the number 1 Test bowler currently. The spin department is dependent on Nathan Lyon.
Current Australian ODI team of 2020 – which is ranked 4th in the ICC ODI ranking – is captained by Aron Finch. He, along with David Warner, opens the innings for Australia in ODIs and also feature in the Indian Premier League.
Next comes, Steve Smith, Marcus Stoinis and Glen Maxwell – the Big Show. Marnus Labuschagne strengthens the middle order even more.
Australia bat deep with wicket-keeper Alex Carey batting at number 7. Then follows the bowling line-up of Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins and the lone spinner in the squad in the form of Adam Zampa.
Along with Tests, Australia are currently ranked 1st in the T20I ranking as well and their ODI captain Aron Finch captains the current T20I team.
Like ODIs, Finch opens the T20I innings with David Warner or Mathew Wade. Finch is ranked 3rd in the ICC T20I rankings.
Then Stoinis, Maxwell and Steve Smith form the core of the middle order. Mitchell March and Ashton Agar fill the lower middle-order spots in batting – making four all-rounders in the top 7.
Then the core of the bowling unit follows that includes bowlers like Mitchell Starc, Kane Richardson, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood.
Insert table of current test, odi and t20i players
Australia and India cricket have a long history of cricket from 1947. Since then, these two have played 260 international matches – 98 Tests, 142 ODIs and 20 T20Is – against each other in all formats of the game. In the 98 Tests, the Aussies have won 42 and lost 28 Tests. They also tied 1 and drew 27 Tests.
In the last 2 years, Australia played 20 International matches against India and won 10 out of them. In the last 4-match Test series, India defeated Australia (1-2) for the first time at home. They have won all the T20Is during this period. Of the 14 ODIs during this period, Aussies have won 7 matches.
In the last ODI series, they defeated India 3-2 in the 5-match series away from home just before the 2019 ODI World Cup. Khawaja, Zampa, Cummins, Handscomb and Ashton Turner were the key players in that series.
When it comes to the Test rivalry between the two sides, no match comes closer than the one in 2001 at Eden Gardens, Kolkata. India won that Test after conceding the follow on thanks to brilliant batting by VVS Laxman and Rahul Dravid and excellent bowling spell from Harbhajan Singh.
Aussies were on a 16-match winning streak until that game. Another important encounter between the two teams in the Tied Test at Madras in 1986. Dean Jones’ double century proved vital in that match as he bagged the man of the match in the thriller. Greg Mathews took 5-wicket hauls in both matches.
Australia have a long history of playing against their neighbours since 1946. Since then, these two have played in 207 international matches including all formats – 60 Tests, 138 ODIs, and 9 T20Is.
Australia have won 65% of the matches against New Zealand overall. In the Tests, they have won 34 Tests losing 8 and drawing the remaining 18 Test matches.
In the ODIs, Australia have won two-third of the matches played so far. Out of the 9 T20Is, Australia have lost just 1 and tied 1 match-winning the remaining 7 matches.
In the last 2 years, they have not played much against each other – a total of 5 matches including 3Tests and 2 ODIs. Australia have won all these matches.
One of the ODI encounters was a World Cup match where Mitchell Starc helped skittle New Zealand for just 157 runs defending 244 after Alex Carey and Usman Khawaja helped them reach to set a competitive target at Lord’s. Their recent ODI and T20I series was cancelled due to pandemic.
In the last Test series between two teams, Australia won all the 3 Tests by a margin of more than 200 runs. Marnus Labuschagne emerged as the player of the series.
When it comes to Tran-Tasman series – the name for Test series between Australia and New Zealand – some players that stand out are Richard Hadlee – player of the series twice, Justin Langer – player of the series in 2001-02, and David Warner who was player of the series in 2015-16.
History of cricket between Australia and South Africa dates back to 1902. These two teams have played 222 international matches between each other since then – 98 Tests, 103 ODIs and 21 T20Is. Australia won 52 tests out of the 98. In ODIs, they have lost more than they won against South Africa – a rare thing for the Aussies in ODIs.
In the recent years, these two teams have played 15 matches including all formats with Australia winning just 4 of them. The last Test series they played was back in 2018 which Australia lost 3-1 with a couple of them with huge margins like 322 and 492. Mitchell Starc was the man of the match in the only Test Australia won on this tour.
Back in 2006, Australia won a thriller against South Africa thanks to the champion batsman Ricky Ponting. Playing at Sydney, South Africa set a target of 287 runs on the fifth day for Australia to get. They got over the line in just about 60 overs with Ponting scoring 143 in just 159 deliveries.
In another thriller Test match in 2011, Australia held the nerve at Johannesburg to defeat the South Africans by 2 wickets chasing 310 to win against the likes of Dale Steyn. Khawaja and Pointing played a crucial hand and the tail – Mitchell Johnson and Cummins – helped Australia win the game.
Australia have been playing against Bangladesh since 1990. Since then, these two have played just 31 matches so far including Tests, ODI and T20Is. Australia have won 28 matches losing just two of them with one resulting in no-result. The defeats came in an ODI at Cardiff in 2005 and a Test at Dhaka in 2017.
In recent years, these two have played 2 Tests and 2 ODIs against each other with Australia winning 1 Test and 1 ODI match. They lost their only Test so far against Australia in this period thanks to Shakib Ul Hasan’s outstanding all-round performance with bat and ball – 89 runs and 10 wickets in the match.
The ODI loss against Bangladesh at Cardiff was their biggest upset in ODI history. It was Mohammed Ashraful’s run-a-ball century that helped Bangladesh clinch a victory after restricting the Aussies for 249 in the first innings.
Australia have been playing West Indies since the 1930s. They have played 267 international matches so far – 116 Tests, 140 ODIs and 11 T20Is. The Aussies have won 58 Tests, lost 32 and drew 25 Tests so far with 1 Test resulting in a tie.
In recent years, these two teams haven’t played each other much. Their last encounter was back in World Cup 2019 when Australia beat West Indies by 15 runs thanks to the Man of the Match performance from Nathan Coulter-Nile.
The tied match in 1961 between Australia and the West Indies is regarded as the greatest Test match ever. With just 7 runs to get and 4 wickets in hand chasing 233 in the fourth innings, Australia were favourites to win the Test. But 3 run-outs turned the game in West Indies’ favour and eventually ended up in a tie. Garry Sobers scored a memorable century in that Test.
Australia and Sri Lanka have played each other in 144 international matches – 31 Tests, 97 ODIs and 16 T20Is – since 1975. Australia has lost just 4 Tests so far to Sri Lanka. In ODIs as well, Australia has won about 60% of the matches.
They haven’t played much in recent times. In the last series, they have played just 6 international matches – 2 Tests, 1 ODI and 3 T20I – between them all of which were won by Australia.
Out of the four-Test losses for the Aussies, 3 of them were in the same series away from home in Sri Lanka in 2016. Rangana Herath emerged as the player of the series in 2016 Test series.
Australia has played the Pakistan cricket team in 193 international matches since 1956. It included 66 Tests – 33 wins, 15 losses and 18 draws, 104 ODIs – 68 wins and 32 losses, and 23 T20 internationals – 9 wins and 12 losses.
In the last 3 years, Aussies have played 19 matches winning 11 of them. In the last series in Australia in 2019, the Aussies won both the Tests and 2 of the 3 T20Is with one T20 ending in no-result.
The thrilling Test match in Hobart back in 1999 is regarded as on the best between the two teams. Chasing a target of 369 in the fourth innings Justin Langer and Adam Gilchrist scored centuries against the likes of Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar to help Australia get over the line.
Test cricket began with a match between Australia and England way back in 1877 at Melbourne, Australia. These two have played against each other more than any other pair in the history of cricket.
Overall, they have played 522 international matches between them – 351 Tests, 152 ODIs and 19 T20Is so far. With 146 Tests win out of 351, Australia have won 40% Tests against England losing 110 Tests and drawing 95 Tests. The Test series between Australia and England is a 5-match series and is famously named as Ashes.
In the last 2 years, Australia have played 13 matches against England – 5 Ashes Tests, 5 ODIs and 3 T20I – have won a total of 6 matches – 2 Tests, 3 ODIs and 1 T20I. In the last Ashes series that was played in England in August-September 1019, Australia managed to draw the series 2-2.
The match at Headingley one of the best Tests in the 21st century if not all-time. England managed to win it from a completely hopeless situation thanks to a superb knock from the player of the series Ben Stokes. Noteworthy players for Australia were Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne.
Another Headingley encounter between these two teams back in 1981 was a thriller as well which England managed to win despite having to follow on after first innings. It was mainly thanks to Ian Botham’s all-round performance and Bob Willis’ devastating spell that helped England defeat Australia.