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Updated December 25th, 2023 at 15:23 IST

What is a Boxing Day match? Why is IND vs SA & AUS vs PAK called Boxing Day Test? Here's the reason

The Boxing Day Test tradition, starting on December 26, began in 1980, with its roots going back to 1892 when the MCG hosted a Sheffield Shield match.

Garvit Parashar
What is the Boxin Day test match? understand the tradition
What is the Boxin Day test match? understand the tradition | Image:Unsplash
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The test cricket is again starting and India is going to play a lot of test matches and the first test is going to be the historic Boxing Day test match, and many of use have always wondered what is a Boxing Day test match? Well the first thing is there is nothing related to boxing on this day. 
The Boxing Day Test tradition, starting on December 26, began in 1980, with its roots going back to 1892 when the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) hosted a Sheffield Shield match.

As we look forward to the upcoming Boxing Day Tests with India, South Africa, Australia, and Pakistan, let's explore why this cricket event is special and always happens the day after Christmas. India will play South Africa in a two-match Test series, and Australia will face Pakistan in the second Test of their three-match series on December 26.

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The Boxing Day Test: A Yearly Cricket Tradition

The Boxing Day Test is a cricket event that takes place every year at the famous Melbourne Cricket Ground in Australia, starting on December 26, right after Christmas. While it mainly happens at the MCG, similar matches also occur in other parts of the world. The timing of the match coincides with Boxing Day, celebrated on December 26.

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Boxing Day is a tradition observed in the United Kingdom and former British Empire countries like Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Nigeria, Trinidad and Tobago, and South Africa. One theory about its origin dates back to Queen Victoria's time in the 1800s when lower-class British servants received special gifts, known as 'Christmas Boxes,' during the Christmas season. This custom led to the day being called 'Boxing Day.' Churches later adopted the practice of giving boxes to those in need, continuing the tradition after Christmas.

The History of Boxing Day Tests

The history of Boxing Day Tests goes back to 1892 when the MCG hosted a Sheffield Shield game, starting a tradition of matches between Victoria and New South Wales during Christmas. The first international Boxing Day Test at the MCG was in 1950 between England and Australia, but it started on December 22, with a break before resuming on December 26.

The first Test genuinely starting on Boxing Day occurred in 1968 during West Indies' tour of Australia. Since 1980, Australia has hosted a Boxing Day Test every year, starting on December 26, except for a few times in 1984, 1988, and 1994 when Tests began before Christmas and resumed after. In 1989, an ODI game replaced the traditional Test match.

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While Melbourne is the main host for Boxing Day Tests, other cricketing nations like South Africa and New Zealand also join in by hosting matches on this special day.

 

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Published December 24th, 2023 at 19:56 IST

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