tour of England by Australia
The Australian Board was
criticised for deciding the names of the first twelve players to tour in
December so that later performances during the season could not be taken into
account. This was nothing to the condemnation they triggered by omitting Kelleway
and Kippax. The omission of Alan Kippax was described by Monty Noble as a
“crime against the cricketing youth of Australia”
(though Kippax was by then 28) and deprived Australia of a star from the
previous 1924-25 Ashes series. Kelleway published letters attacking the
Board's selectoral approach and later took an offer to report the tour for a
newspaper. Sydney Smith supposedly engineered things so that the
argumentative Kelleway would not tour.
The tour began the tradition of
playing in Tasmania before the journey to England and the tourists also took ten days
for a holiday in Europe before crossing the
Channel. "See Mr Smith" said the players repeatedly because the
manager started by banning his players from talking to the press and later
displeased them further by declining an invitation to meet the Prime Minister.
The General Strike had little
effect on the progress of the tour.
unable to dismiss England with
Gregory and Everett
injured. Mailey and Grimmett made up Australia's attack, with
Richardson and Macartney in support - all slow to medium-paced bowlers. After four matches drawn, the
fifth Test resulted in a famous victory by England to regain the Ashes.
Smith of New South Wales was
appointed tour manager on 9 October 1925; he had previously managed the 1921
tour, Other nominations for the manager's job were for Ernest E Bean, Monty
Noble, Vernon Ransford and Tom Howard. Smith applauded Dr Rowley Pope's value to
the team as honorary medical officer.
Clem Hill (South Australia),Herbie Collins (New South Wales),Jack Ryder (Victoria)
The selectors first picked
the twelve leading players in Australia.
This group included two of the selectors, Collins and Ryder. They then added
three more later in January: Richardson, Woodfull and Ellis.It was announced
that Collins would be captain and Bardsley his vice-captain (beating Jack
Ryder to the post).
First names Announced : 30 December 1925
Tour Party Completed:27 January 1926.
As soon as the tour party
of fifteen was announced, the Board agreed to the selectors' request to add
another player, the fast bowler Sam Everett, to assist Jack Gregory.
Not selected:Charles Kelleway, Alan Kippax, Vic Richardson,John Scott (South Australian fast bowler)
Time between selection and departure from Australia47 days
(27 January- 15 March)
The team left Melbourne
to start their tour on 26 February.They arrived back from playing two matches in Tasmania
on 8 March and had an official farewell in Melbourne Town Hall.In the afternoon they left on the Great
Western Express for Perth“All along
the line welcome awaited them … it was a sort of triumphal advance by the
team, who were acclaimed everywhere as though they were returning with The
Ashes, instead of setting out to give Old England one more tilt for their
possession.” (The Referee, 24 March 1926)
Ending their preliminary tour with a match against Western Australia,
they boarded the R M S Otranto on
15 March.Kelleway who was employed by
an English paper to write on the series also travelled on the 'Otranto' .
A match was played in Colombo on 23 March.
The team left the ship at Naples
on 7 April and reached England
overland by way of Rome, Lucerne
where Collins laid a wreath on the tomb of the unknown soldier.Gregory and Macartney arrived in England on 16 April, as did baggageman Fergie
on his tenth international tour, but the bulk of the party came on the boat
train from Paris, via Dover,
and pulled into Victoria Station, London,
on 18 April. They were greeted by a huge crowd of approximately 10 000
people. Their London
headquarters was again the Hotel Cecil.
Time spent in England
(18 April - 1 October)
Herbie Collins (captain),
Warren Bardsley (vice-captain)and Jack Ryder
None although the team was affected by major illnesses to Hendry
(scarlet fever), Ponsford (tonsilitis) and Collins (neuritis).Sydney Smith played in the two end-of-tour
•Macartney made a century at Lord's (133*), a
second at Headingley (151) and another at Old Trafford (109)
•He scored his century at Headingley before
lunch on the first day
•Bardsley scored 193 not out at Lord's,
carrying his bat through the innings.
•Woodfull (141 at Lord's and 117 at Old
Trafford) scored two centuries in the Test series.
Other first-class matches
The players were given the option of returning via Suez or through North America.
The team took a train from Paddington Station, London,
to Liverpool and on 1 October sailed from
the Merseyside port on the 'Montrose'.They arrived in Quebec
on 9 October, then to Montreal, and via Niagara Falls and New
York to the Pacific coast. They sailed in the Aorangi' from Victoria
via Honolulu, Suva
(5 November) and Auckland (8 November) to Sydney where they
disembarked on 13 November 1926..
Time away from Australia
(12 March to 13 November)
The gross receipts amounted to £38,611, and the: gross expenses
to £17,597. . .so the profit of the tour amounted to £20,714.Players were paid a bonus of £250.
accounts of the tour
Men”(1926) by Arthur Gilligan [Arrowsmith, London]
“Those Ashes"(1927) by Monty Noble [Cassell,London, Melbourne]
“The Fight for the Ashes”(1926) by Plum
The last Australian Test tour for four years until the 1930
visit. However, Oldfield took a side including Bill Woodfull, Charles
Macartney, Bert Oldfield, Tommy Andrews, Sam Everett to Malaya