Interesting Stories behind Boxing Day Test Match

What is the Boxing Day Test Match?

A test match played between Australian Cricket team and any opponent team touring Australia on Boxing Day; 26 of December is known as Boxing Day test match. It begins annually on Boxing Day (26 December) and is played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG).Interesting Stories behind Boxing Day Test Match

Why 26 December is called Boxing Day?

Boxing Day occurs on 26 December. Boxing Day is a holiday celebrated on the day following Christmas Day in the United Kingdom and Commonwealth nations.

In the liturgical calendar of Western Christianity, Boxing Day is the second day of Christmastide, and also St. Stephen’s Day. In some European countries, notably Germany, Poland, the Netherlands and the Nordic countries, 26 December is celebrated as a Second Christmas Day.

According to Oxford English Dictionary, “the first week-day after Christmas-day, observed as a holiday on which post-men, errand-boys, and servants of various kinds expect to receive a Christmas-box”. That’s the reason 26 December is called Boxing Day.

Sports competitions on Boxing Day:

In different European countries different sports competitions are organized on Boxing Day.

In the United Kingdom, a full program of football and rugby union matches is organized on Boxing Day. Originally, matches on Boxing Day were played against local rivals.

In Australia, New Zealand and South Africa, Test cricket matches are played on Boxing Day.

In Australia, the first day of the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne and the start of the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race are on Boxing Day.

In horse racing, there is the King George VI Chase at Kempton Park Racecourse in Surrey, England. It is the second most prestigious chase in Britain, after the Cheltenham Gold Cup.

Boxing Day is one of the main days in the hunting calendar for hunts in the UK and US, with most hunts holding meets, often in town or village centers.

Several ice hockey contests are associated with the day. The IIHF World U20 Championship typically begins on 26 December.  Similarly the Spengler Cup also begins on 26 December in Davos, Switzerland; the Spengler Cup competition includes HC Davos, Team Canada, and other top European Hockey teams.

In some African Commonwealth nations, particularly Ghana, Uganda, Malawi, Zambia and Tanzania, prize fighting contests are held on Boxing Day.

History of Boxing Day Test Match

In 1974-75 Ashes series, there were six test matches in the series. To fit the schedule, the third test at Melbourne was scheduled to start at Boxing Day. That was the origin of the modern tradition. In 1980 Melbourne Cricket Club and Australian Cricket Team secured the rights to begin a test match annually on Boxing Day at the MCG.

Prior to that, during 1950-51 Ashes Series, third day of Melbourne test was played on Boxing Day. The match was played from 22 to 27 December 1950.

Boxing Day One Day International Cricket

In 1989, instead of a Test match, a One Day International involving Australia and Sri Lanka was played, which Australia won by 30 runs.

Stats of Boxing Day Test Match

Sr. No Year Opposition team Result
1. 1950  England  Australia won by 28 runs
2. 1952  South Africa  South Africa won by 82 runs
3. 1968  West Indies  Australia won by an innings and 30 runs
4. 1974  England Draw
5. 1975  West Indies  Australia won by 8 wickets
6. 1980  New Zealand Draw
7. 1981  West Indies  Australia won by 58 runs
8. 1982  England  England won by 3 runs
9. 1983  Pakistan Draw
10. 1984  West Indies Draw
11. 1985  India Draw
12. 1986  England  England won by an innings and 14 runs
13. 1987  New Zealand Draw
14. 1988  West Indies  West Indies won by 258 runs
15. 1990  England  Australia won by 9 wickets
16. 1991  India  Australia won by 8 wickets
17. 1992  West Indies  Australia won by 139 runs
18. 1993  South Africa Draw
19. 1994  England  Australia won by 295 runs
20. 1995  Sri Lanka  Australia won by 10 wickets
21. 1996  West Indies  West Indies won by 6 wickets
22. 1997  South Africa Draw
23. 1998  England  England won by 12 runs
24. 1999  India  Australia won by 180 runs
25. 2000  West Indies  Australia won by 352 runs
26. 2001  South Africa  Australia won by 9 wickets
27. 2002  England  Australia won by 5 wickets
28. 2003  India  Australia won by 9 wickets
29. 2004  Pakistan  Australia won by 9 wickets
30. 2005  South Africa  Australia won by 184 runs
31. 2006  England  Australia won by an innings and 99 runs
32. 2007  India  Australia won by 337 runs
33. 2008  South Africa  South Africa won by 9 wickets
34. 2009  Pakistan  Australia won by 170 runs
35. 2010  England  England won by an innings and 157 runs
36. 2011  India  Australia won by 122 runs
37. 2012  Sri Lanka  Australia won by an innings and 201 runs
38. 2013  England  Australia won by 8 wickets
39. 2014  India Draw
40. 2015  West Indies  Australia won by 177 runs
41. 2016  Pakistan  Australia won by an innings and 18 runs
42. 2017  England  Draw

 Interesting Stories behind Boxing Day Test Match

Australian Cricket Team’s Record of Boxing Test Match

Total matches Australia won Australia lost Draw
42 24 8 10

None of the Asian team have won the Boxing Day Test match yet.