Phoebe Graham’s Ashes Blog: Canberra thriller is one of the greatest Test matches of all time | Cricket News Sky News
In her latest Women’s Ashes blog, Phoebe Graham reflects on Australia and England playing an instant classic Test with both teams on the verge of victory before having to settle for a thrilling draw…
Wow… what just happened in Canberra!
This was not your average test draw. It was all and everything you wanted to see in Test cricket. Ups, downs, twists, turns – it showed why Test cricket will always be the crème de la crème.
England had 257 wins, the highest and boldest chase in Women’s Test history. When Meg Lanning said, we knew what it meant: game on!
I absolutely loved the call. It showed Australian belief and intent. It meant there was going to be a result. Everything was to compete. If the Aussies won, they kept the Ashes. If we won, it would put us in a strong position to win back the Ashes.
Both teams were playing to win. Everything was at stake.
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I’ve heard that the mindset of Aussies throughout this series is ‘they’ll only be happy if they win every game’. Well, not if Heather Knight had anything to do with it.
Knight led abreast throughout the Test, setting the tone with the bat, scoring 168 paces and 48. The fact that she was backed by legend Katherine Brunt, who took eight wickets in the match, shows just how no class oozes in this English locker room.
Both are the epitome of world-class athletes. They show desire and pride every time they put the Three Lions on their chests, and it must have sparked sparks in the England dressing room ahead of the chase on day four. Everyone believed.
The story had twists and turns and nearly ended in a heartbreaking defeat for England. They came down on a flyer, they were aggressive and everyone played to their strengths in the higher order.
It was a brave start and we got to a position where we needed 33 from 35, we saw some back-to-back sixes from Dunkley, and we felt we were in a solid position.
But as the game unfolded, the Australians got six wickets in six overs. We were still in the game and needed 13 out of 15 balls. Then two more wickets fell.
With just one wicket remaining for the last 13 balls, there was a sense of relief at the end as Crossy and Sophie Ecclestone survived the final game balls with the Australians surrounding them. It was a missed opportunity but my God, what a game of cricket!
If you haven’t watched it. Taste it. It’s up there with one of the greatest Test matches of all time. The courage, determination and resilience on both sides showed exactly what the test of cricket is: conviction, hard work and never giving up.
The prominence of « double points » for the test in this multi-format series proved successful as it created a contest where both teams wanted to win.
I don’t think we need to prove that Women’s Test cricket is a good product. Women’s cricket need not continue to prove its worth.
More test cricket please, ECB. The women’s cricket test is spectacular. Now I can’t wait until Thursday for the first ODI. Come to England!