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Top Tens Ashes Special
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Top Ten - Ashes debuts

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A look at some memorable Ashes introductions

With the 2009 series drawing ever closer, skysports.com's Chris Quinn takes a look at the greatest Ashes debuts and recalls some of those who announced themselves onto the world stage in dramatic fashion.

Shane Warne, 1993

Warne's first ever delivery in an Ashes series was soon to become the 'ball of the century.' Warne's leg-spinner pitched outside leg-stump, before sharply turning, passing the bat of Mike Gatting, and clipping off stump, heralding the arrival of Australia's greatest-ever bowler.

Monty Panesar, 2006

Panesar became the first English spinner to claim a five-wicket haul in Perth as England started day one of the third Test well. Monty took 5-92 from 24 overs on a pitch that traditionally favoured pace bowlers. Replacing Ashley Giles who had played the previous two Tests, the Northants spinner took the wickets of Justin Langer, Andrew Symonds, Shane Warne, Brett Lee and Adam Gilchrist.

Neil Harvey, 1948

Harvey only entered the series in the fourth Test, but was retained by selectors to play the fifth. Legendary batsman Don Bradman retired hurt in the innings and Harvey replaced him.

Harvey went on to prove the selectors decision was right by scoring 153 - making him the fifth youngest player to score an Aussie century.

The left-hander's replacing of Bradman, followed by the century, was seen as symbolic that Harvey should be the man to take Bradman's place when he retired.

David Gower, 1978

Two knocks just shy of 50 in the first Test were backed up by a fantastic century in the second. Gower scored 102 from 221 balls in Perth as England won the match by 166 runs and the series 5-1.

Stuart Clark, 2006-07

Clark was called up as cover for Glenn McGrath who was nursing his sick wife. Despite McGrath playing the first Test, Clark still took part and managed to take seven wickets in the game. His form continued throughout Australia's triumphant procession to regaining the Ashes with the paceman picking up 26 wickets at an average of just 17.

Kevin Pietersen, 2005

Pietersen's performances in 2005 were instrumental in England's series win. With the series in the balance, Pietersen hit 158 in the final Test at the Oval to make sure England regained the urn. Pietersen was given the man-of-the-match award for his efforts and finished the series as top scorer on both sides with a total of 473 runs.

Gordon Rorke, 1959

Rorke's Test debut in the fourth Test of the series saw him claim the scalps of Colin Cowdrey and Tom Graveney in a memorable start to his career. However, tipped to go on to bigger and better things, Rorke's career nosedived after a knee injury.

Donald Bradman - Australia, 1928-29

Bradman came over to England as the hottest prospect in Australian cricket, and he did not disappoint.

468 runs in the series could not stop England winning the series, but everyone was aware of Bradman after his 123 knock in the fifth Test.

Bob Massie, 1972

Australian swing bowler Massie was making his Test debut against England in the second Test at Lord's after being overlooked for the first clash and soon showed the selectors what they were missing as he finished the first innings with eight wickets.

Massie would then go even better in the second innings. He took another eight wickets but this time conceded only 53 runs.

The figures of 16/137 were then a world record for a Test debutant and the third best match figures of all time.

Massie only played in another five Tests for Australia after his health affected his swing and accuracy.

Andrew Flintoff, 2005

Andrew Flintoff was already an established England regular and had played in 47 Tests before making his Ashes debut but he soon made up for lost time and finished the series as England's leading wicket taker, claiming 24 victims.

Flintoff was also impressive with the bat, scoring 408 runs in the series. His 68 and 73 in the second Test proved vital knocks to help England to victory. Flintoff then added 102 in the fourth Test as England triumphed by three wickets.

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