Ashes in the 80s: the story of the battle for the urn
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Last Updated: 16/08/19 12:03pm
England dominated Australia in the 80s with Sir Ian Botham to the fore.
In 'Ashes in the 80s' - which you can watch in full ON DEMAND now - we bring you the inside stories on the great Ashes tussles of the decade from the players right in the thick of the action.
Relive the drama, tension and excitement of the battle for the urn at a time when the country was in turmoil - from the unforgettable Ashes of 1981 to the tale of how Australia turned things around to the point where they would dominate through the 90s.
Episode Two - 1982/3 (watch in the video above)
Captain Bob Willis headed to Australia with a squad missing the 'rebel' players who went on the unofficial tour to South Africa.
The defence of the Ashes began with a draw in Perth but it was shocking hooliganism that stole the headlines, Terry Alderman coming off worst after being struck on the back of the head.
A costly drop in the second Test at Brisbane, which allowed Kepler Wessels to score his maiden Test century on debut, would haunt England and a second defeat followed at Adelaide after Willis put Australia in on a flat wicket.
But the series sparked back into life with a thrilling finish in the fourth Test at Melbourne where a last-wicket stand between Jeff Thomson and Allan Border took Australia to the brink of an extraordinary win.
It meant that England travelled to Sydney needing to win to draw the series and retain the urn but their chances were undermined by terrible umpiring.
Episode One - 1981 (watch in the video below)
Has there ever been an Ashes series that has had more of an impact?
Charles Colvile looks back on the 1981 Ashes, which produced one of England's greatest sporting legends who would haunt Australia for years to come.
But it wasn't all one-way traffic as England lost the first Test under captain Ian Terence Botham.
Featuring the reflections of Bob Willis, Allan Border and Botham himself we chart how the return of Mike Brearley revived England's fortunes in dramatic fashion.
The Headingley Test is the stuff of legend and set the tone for a decade of Ashes cricket - and things didn't get much better at Edgbaston as Botham produced one off the most memorable bowling spells of his career.
Watch every episode of 'Ashes in the 80s' ON DEMAND or catch one episode per Test our Ashes coverage.
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