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Ashes 1989 - The Worst Aussie Team Ever - Part Fifteen (final)

  • Ashes 1989 - The Worst Aussie Team Ever - Part Fifteen (final)
  • Ashes 1989 - The Worst Aussie Team Ever - Part Fifteen (final)
  • Ashes 1989 - The Worst Aussie Team Ever - Part Fifteen (final)

Netherlands v Australians, De Diepput, The Hague, 2nd September 1989

With the Ashes series finally over on the Tuesday, Australia took a squad of twelve to play four one-day matches in Netherlands and Denmark.  The first match was at The Hague on the following Saturday.  Mike Veletta returned for his first game since the Glamorgan match back at the beginning of July.  Unlike all the other limited overs game they played on this tour this was a 50-over match as opposed to the 55-over version.

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Border won the toss and elected to bat.  Boon and Veletta opened the innings putting on 66.  But after Veletta was caught and bowled for 16, the Aussies lost 29-4.  Jones went for 6, Moody for 2 and Border for 7 with Steven Lubbers taking all three wickets.  Steve Waugh then counter-attacked with 34 off 33 balls hitting 3 sixes and a four.  Boon was the most successful with 82 off 127 balls, hitting 4 sixes and 6 fours.  Boon, Waugh and Zoehrer went in quick succession as 147-4 became 161-7.  They eventually set 213-9 from their 50 overs with Tim May hitting a quick 31 off 36 balls.

Rackemann took the first two wickets of the Dutch response and although they managed to accumulate scores between them, no one went on with a decent score.  They lost wickets in clusters but after recovering from 62-4, Gomes and Holland put on 34 before an unlikely bowler for Australia got amongst the wickets.  Tim Zoehrer, the reserve wicket-keeper, took 38 wickets in his career but few expected him to get the success he did here.  He took 3-33 from his 10 overs.  Dean Jones also took 2-39 from 9 as the Netherlands were bowled out for 156 giving the Australians a 57 run win.


Netherlands v Australians, De Diepput, The Hague, 3 September 1989

Next day the two sides were back again.  Australia made just one change with Taylor coming in for Boon.  Netherlands made a couple of changes including bringing in Roland Lefebvre, who had spells with Glamorgan and Somerset.

The Dutch won the toss and batted first.  Their score was similar to the day before as they scored 154-8.  No one scored more than 30 as skipper, Lubbers, was top scorer.  Zoehrer took another wicket with Border capturing two.  At 95-4 they lost three wickets without addition and were 120-8 before Ruskamp and Jansen added another 34 for the ninth wicket before they ran out of overs.

The Australians had an awful start as both Taylor and Jones went without scoring as both were caught by Lubbers off Paul-Jan Bakker and they were 6-2.  Veletta and Moody soon got the innings going before Veletta was run out and then Border fell to Lefebvre for 4.  Two rain delays meant the innings was reduced to a target of 130 from 42 overs. 

Steve Waugh hit a quick 23 off 22 balls but then he and Moody were out in quick succession.  Moody had his best innings for a while with 61 off 94 balls, hitting 2 fours and 4 sixes.  Australia eventually reached their target with 3.4 overs to spare, to win by 4 wickets.  Bakker had been the best bowler on the Dutch side with 3-20 from his nine overs.



Denmark v Australians, Svanholm Park, Brondby, 5 September 1989

Before they could make the long trip home, Australia had two more assignments in Denmark.  They contained Ole Mortensen who was a popular member of the Derbyshire side during the 80’s.

Denmark won the toss and elected to bowl first.  Again the Australians had much the same side as they had used in Netherlands.  This was a 40-over-a-side match and Taylor opened with Boon and continued his really poor one-day form of the tour.  For a player who scored over 800 runs in the test series his 10 here gave him a total of 80 runs in seven one-day innings on tour.  Both Boon (48 off 50 balls) and Jones (35 off 42 balls) played typically entertaining innings, but it was Moody who again took centre stage.  He hit 53 off 39 balls with 4 fours and 3 sixes to add to the 61 he’d hit two days earlier.  For Denmark they had the honour of having bowled the Australians out off the last ball of the innings.  They had collapsed from 153-3 to 191 all out with Ole Mortensen returning impressive figures of 10-2-15-3.

The Danes made a decent fist of the chase as Peer Jensen and Johnny Jensen put on 38 for the opening wicket.  But then both fell in quick succession to May and Rackemann.  Peer Jensen scored 29 and ended up as only one of three players to reach double figures.  Top scorer was captain Soren Henriksen, who spent three years with Lancashire.  He hit a run-a-ball 48 with 3 fours and 2 sixes.  N the end Denmark could only score 146-9 off their 40 overs as even Mark Taylor got two wickets.

Australia won by 45 runs in front of about 1500 supporters



Denmark v Australians, Slagelse Stadium, Copenhagen, 6 September 1989

The final game of a long, yet successful, tour was in Copenhagen.  Border won the toss and chose to bat.  Boon went cheaply, Taylor made 22 and so it was Jones and Moody who again carried the innings.  The pair put on 91 for the third wicket as Jones hit 56 off 64 balls with 3 fours and 2 sixes.  Moody was just as belligerent as he had been in the previous games scoring 70 off 39 balls with 2 fours and 7 sixes.  He’d finished the tour with 70, 53 and 61.

The innings fell away again as 210-6 became 223 all out in 39.1 overs, but they felt confident they’d scored enough to win the game.

Much like the day before, the two Jensen openers put on 34, were both out in quick succession and they were soon 58-4.  Henriksen and Mortensen barely made much impression and they were now 81-6 but Aftab Ahmed and Atif Butt rescued things.  They put on 51 for the seventh wicket and when Dean Jones got the wicket of Atif, Aftab continued flaying the attack to all parts.  He ended unbeaten on 77 off 70 balls having hit 4 fours and 4 sixes.  Denmark ended 169-8 in their 40 overs and so Australia won by 54 runs.



So ended a mammoth tour, which had lasted a full four months.  By way of comparison, the tour they’ve just completed was under three months.  Back in 1989 they played a total of 35 matches, whereas in 2015 they contested just 15.

The tour lasted for 125 days, with them playing on 90 of those.  Boon and Marsh played 78 days, with Waugh playing 77.


Averages and Statistics


Total Matches: 35

Won: 24

Drawn: 8

Lost: 3



Played: 6

Won: 4

Drawn: 2

Lost: 0


First Class

Played: 14

Won: 8

Drawn: 5

Lost: 1


One-Day Internationals

Played: 3

Won: 1

Tie: 1

Lost: 1


One-Day Matches (including ODIs)

Played: 12

Won: 11

Lost: 1


Tour averages


Test Averages


When they left Australia they were laughed at as the worst group of tourists to leave those shores, yet they returned as heroes.  This was an important tour in the history of Australian cricket as it was the springboard to the success they enjoyed throughout the nineties and two-thousands.  There was a remarkable synergy with England’s visit down under two year previously, as they were given little chance when they set foot in the country and came back having retained The Ashes.  After this tour England wouldn’t see the urn in their possession until that iconic series in 2005.

Previous Episodes

Part Fourteen - Sixth Test

Part Thirteen - Tour matches v Kent & Essex

Part Twelve - Fifth Test

Part Eleven - Tour matches v Notts & Leics

Part Ten - Fourth Test

Part Nine - Four tour matches including Hants & Gloucs

Part Eight - Third Test

Part Seven - Tour matches v Universities & Glamorgan

Part Six - Second Test

Part Five - Tour matches v Lancs & Northants

Part Four - First Test

Part Three - Tour matches v Warwicks & Derbys

Part Two - Texaco Trophy One-Day International Series

Part One - Opening tour matches





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