A statement from the leader of Leeds City Council regarding the announcement that the England and Wales Cricket Board has awarded an Ashes Test and T20 status to Emerald Headingley.
Cllr Judith Blake, Leader of Leeds City Council, said:
“This is fantastic news for Headingley and for the city of Leeds. This is just reward for Yorkshire for all the hard work that has gone in to re-developing the ground over recent years, and I’m pleased the council has been able to play its part in that.
“High profile matches such as these help showcase the city on the international stage, and continuing the long tradition of Ashes test matches at Headingley is something I know cricket fans in Yorkshire will be immensely looking forward to.”
The Ashes is a Test cricket series played between England and Australia. The series have varied in length, consisting of between one and seven Test matches, but since 1998 have been consistently five matches. It is one of sport’s most celebrated rivalries and dates back to 1882. It’s generally played biennially, alternating between the United Kingdom and Australia. Australia are the current holders of the Ashes, having clinched the 2017-18 series in the third test in Perth.
Although the first Test series played between England and Australia was in the 1876–77 season, the Ashes originated from the solitary Test which the two nations contested in 1882. England lost the match, played at The Oval, and a mock obituary was posted in The Sporting Times, declaring the death of English cricket. It stated that: “The body will be cremated and the ashes taken to Australia.” The Honourable Ivo Bligh adopted the term and, as captain of the English party that travelled to Australia the following winter, promised to bring the “Ashes” home.