Over 130 years ago at Lord’s in 1884, England and Australia played their first ever Test match at the Home of Cricket – This report originally appeared in the 1885 edition of Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack
ENGLAND v. AUSTRALIA
At Lord’s, July 21, 22, 23, 1884. England won by an innings and 5 runs.
England won this match by an innings with five runs to spare, and the main elements of this success were the magnificent batting of A.G. Steel and the bowling of Ulyett. The Australians batted first, and despite a capital innings of 63 by Giffen they lost 9 wickets for 160 runs. Then Scott once more proved how well he merited a place in the team. He was admirably supported by Boyle, and before parting was effected 69 runs were put on for the last wicket. Scott played cool, confident, skilful cricket, and his 75 included ten 4’s, five 3’s, and six 2’s. The chief hits in Giffen’s excellent 63 were four 4’s, three 3’s and ten 2’s. Boyle made his runs in plucky determined style. When time was called on the opening day England had lost three wickets for 90 runs, so the match then stood in a fairly even position. Lucas batted finely for his 28, and Shrewsbury’s 27 was also a good innings.
Next morning Steel commenced his remarkable innings, joining Ulyett, the overnight not out. At 120 Ulyett was bowled by a yorker for a good 32, and at 135 Harris was clean bowled. Barlow then came to Steel’s aid and a complete mastery was obtained over the Australian bowling, 98 runs being put on before the professional was caught in the slips for an invaluable 38. Just previous to Read’s dismissal Steel had completed his 100, and he was now joined by Lyttleton. Another long stand was made, 76 runs being put on before Lyttleton was bowled for a capital innings of 31. Only three runs were added, and Steel’s magnificent innings came to a close. Steel had been at the wickets while 261 runs had been scored, and a hard chance to Boyle when he had made 48 was the only blemish on his innings. His 148 consisted of thirteen 4’s, four 3’s, eighteen 2’s, and 48 singles, and was the highest score made against the Australians during the season. Peate and Christopherson put on 28 runs for the last wicket, and before play ceased that day the Australians had lost four wickets in their second innings for 73 runs.
On the last day Scott made a gallant effort to save the innings defeat, but without avail. He was highest scorer in both innings of the Australians, and his total of 105 for once out was a very fine performance. Blackham received a blow on the finger which compelled his retirement from the game. Ulyett’s bowling figures speak for themselves, but he was undoubtedly helped by the ground.
ENGLAND v. AUSTRALIA
At Lord’s, July 21–23, 1884. England won by an innings and 5 runs.
Australia 229 (105.2 overs) (H.J.H. Scott 75, G. Giffen 63; E. Peate 6-85) and 145 (94.1 overs) (H.J.H.
Scott 31*; G. Ulyett 7-36); England 379 (184.1 overs) (A.G. Steel 148, R.G. Barlow 38, G. Ulyett 32,
Hon. A. Lyttelton 31; G.E. Palmer 6-111).