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This is the story of a successful Ashes tour to Australia. The party was led by legendary Yorkshire batsman Len Hutton and took with them the Ashes, won in 1953. After a resounding defeat in the first Test match, the MCC team found new inspiration and won three successive Test matches to retain the Ashes much to many people's surprise. The success of the tour owed much to the emergence of a group of young cricketers, Peter May, 24, Colin Cowdrey, 21, Brian Statham, 24 and the most exciting newcomer of all Frank Tyson, also 24. In the five Test matches Tyson took 28 wickets and acquired a sobriquet-'Typhoon' Tyson that never left him. May and Cowdrey both scored over 300 runs in the Tests and Statham, the most dependable of fast bowlers, took 18 wickets. The composition of the MCC party had caused some surprise when Trueman, Laker and Lock were all omitted. This trio had taken 19 wickets in the victory at The Oval in 1953. The choice of captain was also in doubt as the selectors had hoped to appoint David Sheppard but he opted for a different career so Hutton kept the job. This was an historic Ashes series and Alan Hill's lively account of the tour and the exploits of England's young cricketers who dared to challenge the mighty Australians will enthral all lovers of the noble game.
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Alan Hill is well known as a biographer of several legendary cricketers including Hedley Verity, Peter May and Herbert Sutcliffe. His last book, a biography of Brian Close was much praised by reviewers. Hill who has twice won the prestigious Cricket Society Literary Award lives in Lindfield West Sussex.
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