No raining on England parade

2013-08-05 22:21
England retain the Ashes (Getty Images)
Manchester - Rain has been associated with international cricket played at Old Trafford ever since its first scheduled day of Test action was washed out in 1884.

And the local climate found some new fans as England retained the Ashes at the Manchester ground on Monday after a rain-affected draw in the third Test with Australia.

England, after just over an hour-and-a-half of playing time Monday, were in dire straits at 37 for three, having been set 332 to win, when a downpour meant no more play was possible.

The ensuing draw left Ashes-holders England with an unassailable 2-0 lead in the Ashes heading into the fourth Test in Durham, which starts on Friday.

"Many times I have cursed the rain in Manchester, but today I would take it home to meet my grandma and marry it," England off-spinner Graeme Swann tweeted, while former captain Michael Vaughan posted a picture of the Ashes urn and the caption "RAINTAINED".

Kevin Pietersen, whose first innings 113 was key to the hosts avoiding the follow-on and saw him surpass Graham Gooch, now the team's batting coach, as England's all-time leading run scorer in all international formats, told his Twitter followers: "Ashes retained.. Wow! What a feeling.. Outstanding by this team to do it in 3 Tests..

"And.. Thank you for being so nice during this Test! It was an incredibly proud moment when I found out about the record.. More runs to come!"

England great Ian Botham had forecast England would win this series and the return campaign in Australia, which starts in November, by a combined 10-0.

But he was happy to make a slight adjustment and celebrate the fact England were holding on to the Ashes for a third straight series following their 2009 and 2010/11 successes.

"Rain saves Aussies today at Old Trafford so will have to settle for 9 nil.... !! Ashes retained.....3 out of 3......!!" tweeted former all-rounder Botham, who saved many of his best performances for Australia, notably the 1981 Ashes where he turned the series England's way with several stunning displays.

Meanwhile British Prime Minister David Cameron added his tribute too.

"And to think some people criticise the British weather. Congratulations to our cricketers on retaining the Ashes."

But with England's football team not having won a major trophy since lifting the 1966 World Cup on home soil, it was left to former striker turned sports broadcaster Gary Lineker, a keen cricket fan, to add a note of perspective to what was yet another in a growing list of national sporting triumphs.

"The Ashes retained in another great year for British sport. All so easy nowadays, but we can rely on good old football to keep us grounded," he tweeted.

Read more on:    the ashes  |  cricket


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Previous Results

Date Match Result

Who will win the 2019 edition of the Ashes?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2019/20 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.