Looking Back At England’s Trent Bridge Ashes Triumph
For Nottinghamshire’s own Stuart Broad, it was a performance that he could scarcely believe. In the first two hours of one of the most crucial test matches of his career, his fizzing deliveries dismissed no fewer than eight Australian batsmen – conceding just 15 runs in the process.
The Trent Bridge crowd knew they had witnessed something special, as England effectively sealed the Ashes in an extraordinary first 18 overs – rattling through the much-fancied Australians for just 60 runs.
Although there was some disappointment for fans with tickets that the game finished almost three days early, the demolition job simply gave them – and the England team – extra time to party right here in Nottingham.
We only had to wait until Saturday morning to finally celebrate the reclamation of the little urn – and as Nathan Lyon’s stumps were splattered just before lunch – Nottingham’s pubs, bars and restaurants braced themselves for a booming weekend.
It was also great to see the teams out and about in the build up to the game, sampling some of Nottingham’s finest establishments – the Aussies in particular were keen to try out some local caffs – including Delilah’s, Kitty Café and 200 Degrees.
Staged at the world’s third oldest Test Match venue, Trent Bridge looked magnificent, whether the sky was dark and menacing as Broad reigned terror on the Aussies, or shining blue as Joe Root leisurely dispatched balls to the boundary.
We went along on the Friday to soak up the atmosphere in and around the stadium – as visitors enjoyed the city’s hospitality, and the seamless staging of one of the world’s biggest cricket matches.
The fancy dress was out in force, while a live band – fronted by Graeme Swann – entertained fans during the intervals. Although our flags were flying around West Bridgford offering a warm welcome to all visitors – the Notts crowd treated pantomime villain Mitchell Johnson to anything but – as he came out to bat, before being quickly dismissed.
The mutual respect and admiration that makes the Ashes rivalry so special was on full display the morning after, however, as a tearful Australian Captain – Michael Clarke – announced his retirement from international cricket to a rapturous ovation from all gathered inside Trent Bridge.
As Nottingham looks to cement its place as Visit England’s Home of Sport, the passion on show from the fans, the blinding ability of local heroes like Stuart Broad, and the wholehearted embrace that major sporting events like this receive when they visit the county, couldn’t have provided a better advertisement for Nottinghamshire.
The city, and its businesses, have received heaps of great publicity as a result of staging the Test, whether it’s ESPN’s evocative description of walking towards Trent Bridge from the train station, or David Lloyd’s crusade to sample as many pubs and curry houses as possible.
What’s more, the Ashes’s legacy is guaranteed to be a lasting one, as a new community clubhouse springs up on the nearby Victoria Embankment – guaranteeing that cricket will be played alongside the River Trent for at least the next century.