Tag: Melbourne Cricket Ground

The Indian Hockey Team’s Gold Medal winning feat at the 16th Olympics in Melbourne 1956 can be felt at the MCG Library

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(Left) The Indian winning team after getting their medal. (Right) The result of the Melbourne Olympics 1956 in ‘The Official Report of the Organizing Committee for the games of the 16 Olympiad Melbourne 1956” in the MCG Library. PHOTOS: SAT/NN.

By Neeraj Nanda

MELBOURNE, 1 August 2020: Last year (18 January 2019) while covering the 3rd ODI between Australia and India at the MCG, I decided to visit a place in the MCG which most Cricket fans don’t go or are not aware of. And, this was the MCG Library. After a long walk with my ex-HT colleague Ashok Kumar (from Sydney), we reached this neat and defining intellectual hub full of thousands of books, magazines, publications, and friendly staff.

An exhibition of sorts of memorabilia from different Australia-India Cricket encounters were taking place with few people around. But I was interested in something else – some material on India’s Gold Medal winning team in the Melbourne Olympics, 1956. Yes, those were the days and Indian Hockey was in its glory. The MCG Library is a library of all sporting stuff, not just cricket.

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MCG Library. Photo-MCG LIbrary Facebook page.

The rather nostalgic and historic details of India’s Hockey Gold and the tournament in this volume are as follows:

There were three groups of teams – Group A – India, Singapore, Afghanistan and USA, Group B- Gt. Britain & N. Ireland, Australia, Malaya and Kenya and the last Group C had Pakistan, Germany, New Zealand and Belgium. The winner of Groups A & B, and the 1st & 2nd team in Group C qualified for the Semi-finals.

In the Semi-finals India defeated Germany 1-0 and Pakistan defeated Great Britain & N. Ireland 3-2.

And, in the final India defeated Pakistan 1-0 (Half-time – 0-0).

The Indian team consisted of – S. Laxman, Baksish Singh, R. S. Gentle (Captain), L. W. Claudius, Amir Kumar, G. Perumal, Raghbir Lal, Gaurdev Singh, Balbir Singh and R. S. Bhola.

The Pakistan team consisted of – H. Zakir, A. Munir, M. H. Atif, Gulam Rasul, A Anwar, H. Mussarat, Noor Alam, A Hamid, R. Habib, A Nasir and Ullah Muti.

The Refrees were: M. G. Cowlishaw (Gt. Britain & N. Ireland) and J. McDowell (Australia).

FINAL PLACINGS: 1. India, 2. Pakistan, 3. Germany, 4. GT Britain and N. Ireland, 5. Australia and 6. New Zealand.

Lastly, India scored 36 goals in the tournament and no goal was scored against it. Pakistan scored 7 goals and 1 goal was scored against it. Germany scored 5 goals and 4 were scored against it.

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PHOTO-MCG Library

Well, there is much more in this library which needs to be told. One can research endless topics here. This vintage stuff, I feel, needs to be digitalized for posterity. Hope the MCC/MCG management looks into this need or has it started?

The Library founded in 1873, has been described as one of the best sport-related collections in the world. The collection consists of some 100,000 monographs, periodicals, newspapers, programs and ephemera, and microfilms, videotapes/DVDs, and CD-ROMs. We are also told there are around 30,000 books and all are not on display.

Meanwhile, we could hear the noise from the MCG stands as India was moving towards victory. Reluctantly, me and my friend moved back to the media room. I am sure next time you go to see a match at the MCG, a visit to the MCG Library will also be a priority.

With 86,714 attendance ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Final sparks new era for women’s sport

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Australia celebrates after winning the ICC Women’s T20 Cricket World Cup Final match between India and Australia at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on March 08, 2020, in Melbourne, Australia.Photo: ICC

By SAT News Desk/ICC

MELBOURNE,8 MARCH 2020: The ICC Women’s T20 World Cup Final broke the world record attendance for a women’s cricket match as 86,714 watched Australia beat India at the MCG. The attendance also marked the highest attendance for a women’s sporting event in Australia as the hosts won their fifth T20 World title in front of a home crowd defeating India by 85 runs.

In fact, that’s an understatement – the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup 2020 Final will be seen as the day which marked the dawn of a new era for women’s sport worldwide.

Five years in the making, the most highly-anticipated occasion in the sport’s history lived up to its billing by setting a new attendance record not just for a women’s sporting event in Australia, but for women’s cricket globally.

It may have fallen just short of beating the world record attendance for a women’s sporting fixture, but 86,174 fans filling the iconic MCG is a sight for any sports fan to behold.

In the six previous editions of the tournament, the highest Final crowd came in 2009 when 12,717 watched England beat New Zealand in Sydney.

And seeing 73,000 more turn up in Melbourne for the same event 11 years later is a true testament to how far the game has come.

“I never thought I’d be playing in front of a crowd like this,” said Australia’s Ashleigh Gardner.

“It was amazing to have all those people before us.”

What the match had achieved was apparent before the stadium gates had opened as fans streamed into Melbourne Park in their hundreds up to seven hours before the first ball was bowled.

Seas of yellow and blue engulfed the concourse as fans from all walks of life – male and female, boys and girls, young and old – came together through a love of cricket.

But it was when those fans entered the bowl that the real weight of the achievement hit home.

The noise was deafening from the offset – let alone when Alyssa Healy hit back-to-back sixes to set Australia on their way to lifting the title on home soil.

The crowd figures will be talked about for years to come, but you don’t have to look far to realise that filling the MCG for a women’s sport fixture will not be a one-off.

Records had been broken long before the gates at The G had even opened.

By the conclusion of the group stage, fans had engaged with an ICC women’s tournament in greater numbers than ever before.

Since the 2018 tournament, there has been a 1600 per cent increase in viewing minutes in Australia while the ICC’s digital and social platforms have attracted an unprecedented 701 million video views to date – 600 million more than the 2017 50-over tournament recorded overall.

When we look at it that way, filling the MCG was just the icing on the cake for a ground-breaking two weeks in the world of women’s sport.

The best part is those numbers were always a possibility rather than a mere pipe dream.

But this tournament is about so much more than the figures – it’s a defining moment for men, women, cricket lovers and sport fans across the globe.

The players who took to the field at the MCG were representing every female who has come before them and giving this generation the platform to shine will undoubtedly change the sport for the better.

Amidst the sea of face-painted children were not only young girls with new role models to look up to but also boys wearing Australia shirts with Jess Jonassen’s name on the back.

“Everyone is talking about what a big day this is for women’s game, I think it’s a big day for cricket,” said ICC commentator Harsha Bhogle.

“In small towns in India, they’ll all be watching these girls and saying ‘I want to be her on the big stage as well.’”

Australia’s winning 184 is the highest total in a T20 World Cup Final across both the men’s and women’s tournaments.

So if Sunday night proved anything, it’s that it doesn’t matter who’s playing – sport always has the potential to be our greatest spectacle.

Cricket is a sport that brings joy to so many worldwide and now it’s proved it can successfully expand its circle.

And if this tournament is anything to go by, that circle is only going to get bigger and bigger.

80,473 attend Day 1 of the Domain Boxing Day Test 2019 between Australia and New Zealand

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Photo: Cricket Australia, Twitter.

By SAT Sports Desk

MELBOURNE, 26 December: With the Sun shining over the MCG 80,473 supporters today attended Day 1 of the Domain Boxing Day Test between Australia and New Zealand – the largest ever crowd for a day of Test cricket between the two nations.

“Today’s attendance at the Melbourne Cricket Ground was the second-largest Day 1 crowd at a Boxing Day Test for a non-Ashes fixture – behind only the 85,661 who turned out to watch Australia play the West Indies in 1975-76. Overall, it’s the sixth highest Day 1 Boxing Day Test crowd at the MCG including Ashes Tests, says a Cricket Australia media release.

Cricket Australia CEO Kevin Roberts said the huge crowd at the MCG spoke to the popularity and vibrancy of Test cricket in both Australia and New Zealand.

“Thanks so much to the Australian and New Zealand fans who made history at the MCG today,” Roberts said.

“The atmosphere was brilliant from ball one and reflective of the great rivalry between our two nations on the field, and the close relationship we have off it.

“We can’t wait to be back at the MCG on March 8 next year, as we seek to eclipse today’s crowd at the Final of the ICC T20 World Cup Australia 2020 on International Women’s Day.”

The previous Day 1 record for an Australia-New Zealand Test at the MCG was 51,087 in 1987/88.

Melbourne Stars announce Indian & Sri Lankan events at the MCG

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Cricket Australia CEO Tony Dodemaide addressing the gathering. Photo:SAT/NN.

By SAT News Desk

MELBOURNE, 16 January: The Melbourne Stars are all set to organize big Sri Lankan and Indian bashes at the MCG on the 20 and 27 January respectively. The events in harmony with matches on those days will see cricket, celebration, music, dances, crowd interviews and lots of fun. The program was announced at a glittering get-together at the Melbourne Cricket Ground yesterday (15 January 2018).

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Guest speaker David Hussey (Melbourne Stars) at the function. Photo: SAT/NN.

The ‘Sri Lanka Big Match Party’ with Papare Band and Bailia Dance will take place on 20 January 2018 at 4 pm starting from the Richmond Station to the MCG.

The ‘Indian Republic Day Party’ with Indian dances, DJ music and a dedicated Indian fan bay will take place on the 27 January 2018 at the MCG.

The function was addressed by the Cricket Australia CEO, Tony Dodemaide saying that Cricket is not just making runs but fun, party, and enjoyment.

Guest speaker David Hussey (Melbourne Stars) detailed his experience in the IPL as ‘more than an educational experience’ and how he had enjoyed playing cricket in Sri Lanka and India.

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A beautiful Sri Lankan dance and band music laced with the crowd dancing and distribution of Community Ambassador certificates was the highlight of the evening.

India gear up for the big bout on Boxing Day

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Photo: BCCI; Story source: BCCI

From Anand Subramaniam & Rajneesh Gupta

Mumbai, 23 December 2014:

What

Third Test of the four-match series between India and Australia

When

December 26 to 31, 2014

Where

Melbourne Cricket Ground

The Teams

India

The last time India played a Test match at the MCG, it was all over in a matter of four days. Back in 2011, it was a case of putting Australia under pressure for the initial stages of the Test match and then giving away the advantage for the remainder of the days and ultimately handing over the hosts a win. Fast forward to 2014 and things haven’t changed. India were within sniffing distance of a historic win at Adelaide only to be undone by a batting collapse. But in the Adelaide loss, India had won a battle of their own and suddenly, here was a side that looked like giving the Australians a run for their money. They did have Australia under the pump at the Gabba reducing them to 247/6 at one stage. All it required were a few words with Mitchell Johnson to wrong the right they had done so far in the Test match. Australia went on to score 505, Johnson scored a quickfire 88 that changed the course of the Test match and returned with a fiery bowling performance to spell doom for the visitors. On Boxing Day at the ‘G’, India face an uphill task of registering a win to stay alive in the series.

A lot has happened over the week in the Indian camp. India have raised issues about worn-out practice pitches given to them at the Gabba and in the process getting injured (read – Shikhar Dhawan). The captain accepted of ‘unrest’ in the dressing room regarding the situation. But, India need to put all this behind and enter the MCG with a free mind. They have the potential to ask questions off the hosts which was evident in the first two Tests and it’s about time they clutch on to those crucial moments in a Test match. If India can hold themselves together and focus on the job in hand with a belief that they can turn things in their favour, then MCG might just be the start.

Australia

With Australia having registered an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series, Christmas celebrations are bound to get even more grand as the team gears up for the big day at the MCG. Playing a Boxing Day Test match is big and Australia will leave no stone unturned to put up yet another dominant show on Friday. For starters, David Warner who injured his left thumb in the second Test, is adamant that that the injury won’t keep him out of the third Test. Warner has gone on to say that he will do everything he can to be fit to play at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground.

Leading a team at the MCG, walking out to bat, running with that red cherry in hand at the confines of the G – these are things that every cricketer yearns for; such is the magnanimity of the occasion – A Boxing Day Test. Australia have their own set of injury concerns as well after Shane Watson and Mitchell Starc hurt themselves while practicing at the nets. Mitchell Marsh suffered a hamstring injury at the Gabba which means Queensland batsman Joe Burns could make his Test debut at the MCG. Australia look dominant as ever and their new captain Steven Smith has led by example thus far with a win and century under his belt as Test captain for Australia. When Smith leads his side at the MCG, he will walk out with his collar up and look to seal the series.

Key Players

India

At the Gabba, Varun Aaron looked far from impressive, Ishant Sharma was consistent in patches and Umesh Yadav showed the ability to ask questions off the Aussie batsmen. While Ishant Sharma knocked three in Australia’s run-chase in Brisbane, he was ably supported by Yadav who picked two. Also, Yadav will have fond memories of the MCG where he picked up seven wickets in the Boxing Day Test match in 2011. At that time he had a Zaheer Khan to partner and guide under whom he worked out his bowling plans to good effect. This time around he needs to work his plans out with the other two seamers to help India take 20 wickets. If the pacers can hunt as a pack with some good support from R Ashwin, India could have Australia in trouble.

Australia

It’s been eight Test innings since Shane Watson scored a half century. He averages just 18 in his four innings with a highest score of 33 this series. Watson has looked good in patches but has not been able to convert those starts into big scores. His highest Test score over the past year is an unbeaten 83 that he scored against England in the Ashes at the MCG. MCG might just be the place where Watson strikes form. He proved to be more than a handful with the ball in his hand bowling a tight line keeping the Indian batsmen under check. If his bat can do the talking, we all know how lethal an all-round Watson could prove to be.

Trivia

India have won only one out of 13 Boxing Day Tests. They have suffered defeats on 10 occasions in such Tests (including five out of six against Australia).

R Ashwin needs 52 runs to complete allround double of 1000 runs and 100 wickets. If he does so in this Test, Ashwin will become the quickest Indian to race to this milestone (in 23 Tests) along with Vinoo Mankad.

The Squads

India: M.S.Dhoni ( Captain), Virat Kohli, Shikhar Dhawan, Murali Vijay, K.L. Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Suresh Raina, Wriddhiman Saha, Naman Ojha, R. Ashwin, Karn Sharma, Axar Patel, Dhawal Kulkarni, Mohd. Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Varun Aaron.

Australia: David Warner, Chris Rogers, Shane Watson, Steven Smith (Captain), Shaun Marsh, Joe Burns, Brad Haddin (wk), Mitchell Johnson, Mitchell Starc, Nathon Lyon, Josh Hazlewood, Ryan Harris, Peter Siddle

Source: BCCI